A young woman, Alex, is raped by a stranger in a tunnel. Her boyfriend Marcus and ex-boyfriend Pierre decide to do justice themselves. In 2002, Gaspar Noé created controversy (and controversy) by presenting his film at the Cannes Film Festival. 17 years later, he returns with a brand new version of his cult film. Initially operated in an anechronological form (the film starts at the end and ends at its beginning), with Irreversible "Full Inversion" (2019), the filmmaker offers us a completely different reading, offering it to us in a chronological order.
Three people fainted during the showing of the film at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival. See more »
When Alex is in the bed with her boyfriend and they get up to dance, the whole film crew is mirrored on the glass of the window. See more »
You want me to say it? Time destroys everything.
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The letters E, K, N, and R are printed backwards throughout the credits (as is the N in the StudioCanal logo). See more »
The Hong Kong version is cut (despite being given a Category III rating, meaning under 18s are prohibited from watching this film) for nudity and sexual violence. Most genitalia is blurred or pixelated except for the digital penis. Alex's rape is butchered by 5 mins. See more »
If movies are suppose to effect the viewer then this movie is king of the hill. From the dis-orienting camera moves that open the film through the violence in the gay bar, the seemingly never ending rape and the films unraveling of the days events in a backwards march I have yet to meet anyone who has not been deeply effected by this movie - if they were brave enough or stupid enough to watch it. (I'm still trying to figure out a local Best Buy displaying a large number of DVD's as if it was the latest Adam Sandler movie)
It is not an easy movie to watch but as an examination of what people are capable and how violence can come from nowhere and from the unexpected its a masterpiece. The backward structure takes what is essentially a dull revenge story and turns it on its ear as we are forced to really examine how things get out of hand very quickly and what people will do when pushed to the limit.
If you want a challenge to your psyche and can brave simply some of the most vicious and nasty screen violence (yes its graphic but much is also implied) then see this movie - preferably with out distraction. But be warned, even if you think you know what this movie is about and what your limits in screen violence is, you still won't be prepared for what a mental hot foot this film is.
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