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A disturbed young woman is kept prisoner in a castle by her aunt for her money. The game-keeper, her guardian, tries to rape her but she escapes. In her flight she meets a man also running away, from two killers. Written by
Jean-Marie Berthiaume <email@example.com>
Decadent Frenchmen doing terrible things to each other in rain-soaked decaying towns--sounds interesting to you? It did to me when TFO showed this Chereau film recently. Charlotte Rampling as young Claire and Edwige Feuillere as her aunt promised much entertainment, but the reality is that this movie is a disjointed mess that even good performances (the star-studded cast boasts Alida Valli and Simone Signoret too) cannot save.
Claire has a habit of blinding men who paw her with a knife: she does this three times. The two brothers--circus performers turned professional killers (God knows why)--are completely unbelievable. Madame Bastier-Wegener is always surrounded by about ten people, carrying out her orders, they're like a flock of seagulls swooping around. The plot gets more opaque as the film goes along, leaving the viewer desperately trying to fill in the blanks.
Chereau's films hold very little interest for me. He is a theatrical director (his opera productions are really gripping) who strays into cinema from time to time.
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