Michèle seems indestructible. Head of a successful video game company, she brings the same ruthless attitude to her love life as to business. Being attacked in her home by an unknown assailant changes Michèle's life forever. When she resolutely tracks the man down, they are both drawn into a curious and thrilling game-a game that may, at any moment, spiral out of control.Written by
The initial plan was to produce the movie in the United States, but there were problems finding a female lead. Nicole Kidman, Sharon Stone, Julianne Moore and Diane Lane were offered the role, but they all passed on the opportunity. Marion Cotillard and Carice van Houten were also considered. According to Paul Verhoeven, most actresses immediately rejected the part as soon as they had read the script, instead of waiting for a few days, which is normal. One of the actresses said she felt uncomfortable because of things that had happened to her in the past, one didn't give any reasons but just said, 'certainly not'. Verhoeven relocated the shoot of Elle to France after being turned down by Hollywood actresses. Verhoeven revealed that Isabelle Huppert read the book, called up the writer and the producer and said she wanted to do the movie. When they were discussing it, she brought up Verhoeven's name. Huppert chose Verhoeven, not the other way around. Verhoeven told The Guardian that the only American actor who would have been game, he thinks, is Jennifer Jason Leigh, "she would have had absolutely no problem, She's extremely audacious. But she's an artistic presence and we were looking for names", he said. See more »
Richard bangs Michèle's head repeatedly against a concrete wall and hits her in the face with powerful punches. Yet Michèle never loses consciousness, doesn't sustain any bone fractures and gets even away without so much as a swollen eyelid. See more »
If this movie was a person I think it would be diagnosed with having severe ADD and dissociative personality disorder.
The movie is so unfocused that every third scene is the climax of a totally different movie. It feels like a soap opera -- now this person gets raped, now they cheat, now that one dies, now they kiss, now this one's true nature is revealed, and on and on. And all through this severe lack of focus none of the characters have normal emotional reactions to anything, which is what's supposed to make this movie so amazingly absurdly clever but actually just makes it shallow and annoying. And then back to point one -- since no one really feels much of anything, it's very easy to change from subject to subject until we end up with this silly mess.
There are some good parts. The main character does make you root for her, since she is a typical cool and "strong" female character -- which, in movies, means someone who is devoid of actual feeling and sensitivity. She's got sass and does what ever she wants with little regard for others, except of course when she's coolly letting herself be used and harmed for men's purposes, because of course that adds interest to her character and makes it provocative, gasp. There's the soap-opera intrigue that will keep you watching for some cheap thrills, twists and turns and red herrings and what not. And it is a overall a "pretty" movie with attractive people and places.
But at the end of this movie, as with any soap, one feels cheated and wasteful of time. Skip it.
55 of 105 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this