In post-holocaust France, hungry people turn to each other for food. The local butcher (played by Jean-Claude Dreyfus) is handing out human joints in exchange for corn and wheat. He also regularly advertises for a lodger/handyman to supplement his supply of fresh meat. Vegetarians form an underground resistance movement ... living underground in the sewers.
The plot of French film Delicatessen!
But the butcher’s daughter (Marie-Laure Dougnac) falls in love with the latest lodger – a clown (Dominique Pinon) whose gorilla was kidnapped and eaten. She can no longer go along with her father’s actions and seeks help from the resistance to rescue her beloved.
I love one of IMDB’s trivia factoids:
Jean-Pierre Jeunet got the idea for a cannibal butcher when living in an apartment above a butcher's shop. Each morning at 7am he would hear the metallic clash of knives and a voice shout, "Chop chop!" His girlfriend said he was carving up the neighbours, and it would be their turn next week.
It’s surreal, funny, and very inventive. From Jean-Pierre Jeunet who went on to direct Amélie. A worthy precursor of The Science of Sleep (La Science des rêves). From the opening dustbin scene to the flooding baptismal finale and the closing rooftop concert - a classic French film from 1991. But still fresh today.
Recommended - and down from £19.99 to £3.98 on Amazon UK at time of posting! (Just forgive the lack of sync when they play the cello and the saw.)