We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

Members of the Audrey Tautou cult may recoil from the idea that their heroine is less than great, but God Is Great, I’m Not reduces the Divine Mlle Amelie to a slightly tiresome spiritual tourist. Devastated after having an abortion and splitting with her boyfriend, flighty young Parisian fashion model Michele (Tautou) sleeps with Francois (Edouard Baer), a not especially observant Jewish veterinarian, and then attempts suicide. Despite this unpromising preamble, Michele and Francois are soon a more-or-less happy couple: The principal source of tension in their relationship is Michele’s fascination with her new beau’s Jewishness. She abandons her half-baked Buddhism and decides to convert to Judaism, following Orthodox rules that her boyfriend ignores and forcing herself on Francois’ folks, who are visiting from Israel. This attempt to endear herself to her lover’s parents contrasts with Michele’s conspicuous lack of interest in improving her relationship with her own mother and stepdad. Ultimately, Michele and Francois split, too—yet there’s a lingering magnetism that forecasts a conventional happy ending. Writer-director Pascale Bailly’s intermittently appealing romantic comedy was made before Amelie, but it spent two years on the shelf after its original producer went bankrupt. That was long enough for Tautou to become a star, but God Is Great’s newfound marketability has done nothing for Bailly’s gimmicky direction (heavy on fades to black) and underwitten script. Aside from the charm of the principal actors, Bailly relies mostly on religious and cinematic in-jokes, strongly suggesting the influence of Woody Allen. Indeed, her idea of updating Annie Hall is to stage a scene in the line to see Shoah rather than The Sorrow and the Pity. —Mark Jenkins