This film could have been titled “There Will Be Beef.”
Daniel Auteuil, who seems to be the busiest actor in France right now, has that look about him of a man worried about whether he is doing the right thing. In "Apres Vous" he does the right thing and it results in nothing but trouble for him. He rescues a man in the act of committing suicide, and then in an irony which is probably covered by several ancient proverbs, he feels responsible for the man's life.
Auteuil plays Antoine, the maitre d' at a Paris brasserie, which, if the customers typically endure as much incompetence as they experience during this movie, must have great food. Taking a short cut through a park late one night, Antoine comes upon Louis (the sad-eyed, hangdog Jose Garcia), just as he kicks the suitcase out from under his feet to hang himself from a tree. Antoine saves him, brings him home, introduces him to his uneasy girlfriend Christine (Marilyne Canto), and cares more about Louis than Louis does.
Louis, in fact, wishes he had committed suicide. He is heartbroken over the end of his romance with Blanche (Sandrine Kiberlain), and suddenly remembers he has written a letter bidding farewell from life and mailed it to the grandmother who raised him. Antoine promptly drives through the night with him to intercept the letter, and finds himself living Louis' life for him.
"Apres Vous" is intended as a farce, but lacks farcical insanity and settles for being a sitcom, not a very good one. One problem is that neither Louis nor his dilemma is amusing. Another is that Antoine is too sincere and single-minded to suggest a man being driven buggy by the situation; he seems more earnest than beleaguered.