Friday, November 2, 2012


Strange French film that is tied to Se7en, Silence of the Lambs and other serial killer movies, is disturbing in its own way in that most of the film is the cinematic equivalent to being trapped in the mind of a mentally ill person.

The plot has something to do with Stan, a recently released mental patient trying to get by in the world, while trying to determine if he is in fact a serial killer loose in the French countryside.

Told from the point of view of Stan we are constantly off balance since its clear from the first frame that reality is purely subjective in this tale. For much of the film the director and his crew create very off center images, for example Stan's shrink sits in front of a wall of light boxes on which we see brain scans and x-rays and the film uses the images created by shooting through a fish tank to good effect. The film also resorts to an odd short hand by echoing other (better) serial killer films by having Stan living in a place that is similar to Kevin Spacey's home in Se7en, be interested in photography like the killer in Manhunter not to mention other riffs and rip offs. This isn't as bad as some have made it out to be since the film often uses them to disorienting effect since its clear thats we are no where near Kansas. Frankly having made it to the end I'm not sure what I just saw.

For the most part the film works, unfortunately it has one serious flaw and that is its pacing is way too lack. The film wastes much of its tension and disorientation simply because it doesn't know when to move on to the next thing. I think one's like or dislike of this film will be tied to one's ability to deal with the slow pace. I like the film and can recommend it with the warning that it is a slow movie.

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