"The Intouchables," ably directed by the duo Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano, is a feel-good comedy that rises above its hackneyed although true, storyline. There are no surprises here when former con, Driss (Omar Sy) becomes the caretaker of quadriplegic millionaire, Philippe (Francois Cluzet), except in the delightful escapades they share as Driss helps Philippe regain his joie de vivre. We know that despite their huge societal and economic differences, they will end up being BFFs. And yet the journey there is heartwarming and hilarious, thanks to excellent acting by Cluzet and Sy.
Driss refuses to pity Philippe and even makes fun of his charge. But this pragmatic punching is just what the millionaire seeks and is what helps lead him out of his stuffy, restrained, aristocratic existence to discover love and new meaning in life. Driss, on the other hand, finds his rough street savvies melting to protective love as he conjures up new adventures for the pair.
Special features in the Blu-ray version include five deleted scenes, at least one that adds more meat to the relationship between Driss and his ’mother.’
Yes, we know the storyline and that it will all somehow end well. Yes, the film glosses over the indelicacies and difficulties of being and taking care of a quadriplegic. (Secret: Money, and lots of it, helps.) Sure, racial and class stereotypes abound. But all is mostly forgiven in the laughs and feel-good emotions the film provokes.