Borderlands (Zev Berman, 2007): 6.5/10

The Magic Flute (Ingmar Bergman, 1975): 7/10

La Guerre Est Finie (Alain Resnais, 1966): 7/10

Speed Racer (The Wachowski Brothers, 2008): 8/10

My Photo
Location: milwaukee, wi

Friday, November 24, 2006

Lemming (Dominik Moll, 2005)

Lemming is the latest offering from Dominik Moll (With a Friend Like Harry), starring Laurent Lucas (whom I was impressed with in Calvaire) and Charlotte Gainsbourg (daughter of Serge and, most recently, costar of The Science of Sleep) as married couple Alain and Benedicte, pleasant enough yuppies who invite Alain's boss (Andre Dussolier) and wife (Charlotte Rampling, terrifying as ever) over to dinner one night. Mr. and Mrs. Pollock are hours late, and when they do arrive, Alice, the wife, is bitter and outwardly angry, not only at her husband, but also toward Benedicte, whom she calls pathetic. Nothing is ever the same for Alain and Benedicte after this visit, and especially after Alice calls on Benedicte a few days later. Not only is the Gettys' relationship changed and threatened, they have found a lemming in their drain pipe, an incredibly ominous sign for the rest of the film. What starts out as a drama about infidelity and what makes someone happy in modern day society turns into, in its second half, a ghost story about possession and the concept of reality. Unfortunately, these two good concepts are handled far too slowly and heavily to be of any real interest.

Gainsbourg is great as Benedicte, the mild-mannered wife who shows no real emotion until after the Gettys' visit. Rampling is barely on screen (only four scenes!), but her presence is felt throughout the entire film, the sign of a great actress. Too bad Moll didn't use her nearly enough here. Lucas turns in my favorite performance of the film, as Alain, who is torn between sexual desire and his absolute need for his wife. But when the elements all come together, as in Benedicte and Alain's trip to a mountainside cabin, the result is less then impressive. As several reviews I've read have said, the movie promises to be about that which is most intriguing and strange about existence, but in the end, is really about nothing. Psychological trauma has, unfortunately, never been so boring. Plus, the film, at over two hours long, could have been cut by at least half an hour and not really lost anything. I recommend this film for the performances, but not for the entirety, which tries to be a Lynchian interpretation of the suburban postmodern life, but fails.


RIYL: Merci Pour Le Chocolat, some elements of other Chabrol

Labels: ,

StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!

Comments on "Lemming (Dominik Moll, 2005)"


post a comment