Based on Michel Houellebecq's controversial novel, this movie focuses on Michael and Bruno, two very different half-brothers and their disturbed sexuality. After a chaotic childhood with a ... See full summary »
A teen faces her impending adulthood in the carefree sex and drug revolution years of the early 80's prior to fears of AIDS. She lives with her bitter, divorced mother and her sadistic kid ... See full summary »
Desire for a subject that functions like a brief fling with no future as such, yet embellished by that very fact. Because something fleeting and futureless is not necessarrily pathetic or ... See full summary »
Three men, three women, opposites, possibilities, and tastes. Castella owns a industrial steel barrel plant in Rouen; Bruno is his flute-playing driver, Franck is his temporary bodyguard ... See full summary »
This drama focuses on three very different siblings, all searching for happiness. Hans-Jörg is a sex addicted librarian, who is interested in young students. Werner is a successful ... See full summary »
Lazarus is a Cuban appeal that makes a living in Madrid. When his girlfriend Dolores travels from Cuba to Spain to live with him, he is in prison for kidnapping and attempted rape. Dolores ... See full summary »
My name is Louis Depre. I am 28 years old. I live in a hole called Montreal. I do not know what I like. I do not know who I like. I do not know what I want to do with my life. I do not know... See full summary »
Whatever (I saw 'Extension du domaine de la lutte' with English subtitles) is a prototypical modern French film: explicit sex as narrative device, not goal; philosophy; voiceover (there are TWO throughout, a narrator and the principle character); and stylish shooting & editing as standard (oh yes, and 80's style songs at the 'discotheques'). It can be depressing. Keeping closely to the book (Houellebecq collaborated on the screenplay) the principle - unnamed, simply 'Our Hero' - recalls the unfettered optimism of the student uprisings of 1968, in which he took part. The free love (sexual openness) ethic that this midwived is something he equates with the irrepressible expansion of the free market; it affects everyone and creates an increasingly impoverished underclass, to which he admits membership. His friend Tisserand distills this nicely when he announces that he's worked out how much whoring he can afford, since he can't get a girlfriend. Ah, girlfriends... driving the effectiveness of the narrative the film, like the book, has a powerful, but skillfully hidden love story as the hero realises his patchy memories are of a life of love. The Hero isn't a pasty misanthrope after all but just like you or me. With a fag-dyed right hand.
If you've enjoyed watching the BBC TV series 'The Office', you will be immediately at ease with the cringmaking observations of Whatever. The film has a great deal of humour in fact, but always anchored with the gravitational pull of the Hero's deadpan presence and analysis. See it (7/10) and then get happy by renting Daniel Auteil doing a similar thing in The Closet.
5 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?