Early on you feel it’s all going to end badly, and while you wait to find out just how, Ozon explores the relationship between teacher and pupil and the artifices of literature and art (reflecting his apprenticeship with Eric Rohmer), while introducing ambiguities of his own. Of Fabrice Luchini and Kristin Scott Thomas who play Germain and Jeanne (above), Ozon has said:
I have wanted to work with Kristen Scott Thomas for a long time and I just felt that chemistry would work between her and Fabrice because they have the same theatrical background. They also have great comic timing and I think that it works incredibly well. I had in mind the couple of Woody Allen and Diane Keaton in Manhattan - an intellectual couple who are always speaking about intellectual things - and I thought that it would really work between those two actors.and it does. Ernst Umhauer is equally convincing as the precocious but naive Claude. However, Emmanuelle Seigner has less opportunity to impress in the somewhat characterless role of Mme Artole.
Dedicated cinéastes will have views as to whether In the House contains homages to Hitchcock and Allen as well as Rohmer, but apparently it was the art department that prompted the Match Point poster for the cinema queue! A thought-provoking and well-acted film, definitely worth seeing.