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The Intruder (2004)

L'intrus (original title)
Unrated | | Drama | 4 May 2005 (France)
An emotionally cold man leaves the safety of his Alpine home to seek a heart transplant and an estranged son.


Claire Denis

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4 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview:
Michel Subor ... Louis Trebor
Grégoire Colin ... Sidney
Yekaterina Golubeva ... La jeune femme russe (as Katia Golubeva)
Bambou Bambou ... La pharmacienne
Florence Loiret Caille ... Antoinette (as Florence Loiret-Caille)
Lolita Chammah ... La sauvageonne
Alex Descas ... Le prêtre
Dong-ho Kim Dong-ho Kim ... Le propriétaire du bateau
Se-tak Chang Se-tak Chang ... L'associé du propriétaire du bateau
Hong-suk Park Hong-suk Park ... L'homme du marché aux poissons
Edwin Alin Edwin Alin ... Le patron de la quincaillerie
Henri Tetainanuarii Henri Tetainanuarii ... Henri
Jean-Marc Teriipaia Jean-Marc Teriipaia ... Tony
Anna Tetuaveroa Anna Tetuaveroa ... La mère
Béatrice Dalle ... La reine de l'hémisphère nord


Louis Trebor, a man nearing 70, lives alone with dogs in the forest near the French-Swiss border. He has heart problems, seeks a transplant, and then goes in search of a son sired years before in Tahiti. Told elliptically, with few words, we see Louis as possibly heartless, ignoring a son who lives nearby who is himself an attentive father to two young children, one named for Louis. He leaves his bed one night - and his lover - to kill an intruder; he dreams, usually of violence. Will his body accept his heart? Will his son accept his offer? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Unrated | See all certifications »





French | English | Korean | Russian | Polynesian

Release Date:

4 May 2005 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

El intruso See more »

Filming Locations:

Japan See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,640, 25 December 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$40,603, 23 April 2006
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Edited from Le reflux (1965) See more »

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User Reviews

The nonpareil of free association film making
20 May 2006 | by gradyharpSee all my reviews

Claire Denis has demonstrated repeatedly that film does not need to tell a story, that it is sufficient to create an experience that allows the viewer to take the ingredients and make of them what they will.

Ostensibly the idea within the framework of a most non-linear film is the older man living on the French-Swiss border, a man devoted to his dogs, who still has a lover, but whose cardiac status increasingly threatens his life. He has a son with a little family who infrequently meet with him, but when he discovers he is in need of a heart transplant he opts for going to Tahiti via Japan to obtain a heart transplant on the black market and to rekindle a long lost relationship with a son he had form a Tahitian women years ago.

What Denis does with this outline of a story is use her camera to explore the loneliness of the soul, the vastness of nature, man's interaction with people vs animals, etc. Much of the time the 'film' doesn't make sense, but that is because we try too hard to connect all the dots laid out before us in beautiful pictures. Life is sort of like that: we look, see, observe, integrate, process, and make of it what we will.

In using this form of film making (much as she did in the strangely beautiful 'Beau Travail') Claire Denis has developed a signature technique. Whether or not the viewer finds the finished product rewarding has much to do with our individual methods of processing visual and conceptual information. This is an interesting and visually captivating film, but many viewers will find it an overly long discourse about very little. Perhaps watching again will change that. Grady Harp

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