What a very French affair – skilfully directed by Claude Sautet and combining the talents of two of French cinemas most prominent stars: Romy Schneider and Yves Montand.

Rosalie (Romy Schneider) is a headstrong and beautiful young woman, full of joie de vivre and not easily clamped down. She is romantically involved with the older but charismatic César (Yves Montand), a charming and successful businessman not quite in her league, however, his exuberant vitality complements Rosalie’s insatiable lust for life.

Until one day, when unexpectedly and out of the blue, Rosalie’s old flame David (Sami Frey) appears, an attractive man working in advertising and much closer to Rosalie’s age. During a party, David openly flirts with her and later he openly confesses to César that he still loves Rosalie and wishes to win her back. At first, César seems amused and dryly remarks, “Of course you love Rosalie. Everyone loves Rosalie!” but it’s not before long when he has to realise that his girlfriend still harbours feelings for her previous love.

Thus a ménage au trois begins, and it couldn’t me more French. If that were a British film, they’ll be talking about the weather in the first half and would still not have come to the point in the second half – but in César et Rosalie passion and jealousies run riot and make for an explosive firework of emotions. It is old school film-making as its best!

Schneider, Montand and Frey are superb as the trio fatale, and while primarily an ensemble piece, the movie provides tension, humour and drama in equal measure.

To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the film, it is now released in DVD- and Blu-ray format, with the docu ‘Serenade For Three’ as bonus feature.