Elles

Directed by Malgorzata Szumowska

> > Sep 19 2011

Elles - Directed by Malgorzata Szumowska
By Christine EstimaDirector Malgorzata Szumowska clearly enjoys playing with the different settings on her camera, because Elles is a veritable cornucopia of stylish, cleverly realized angles and frames that makes it a sheer joy to watch, even if the plot is somewhat bewildering.

Juliette Binoche plays Anne, an investigative reporter and mother juggling her household routines with the challenge of finishing an exposé on escorts and prostitutes in France. The stories of two escorts, Charlotte and Alicja, (Anais Demoustier and Joanna Kulig), are graphic, erotic and often violent, but the girls all seem to smile and laugh as they tell Anne the most extreme "occupational hazards," leaving Anne to feel the pain and humiliation for them, which is having an unwanted effect on her marriage.

Szumowska has made Elles an ephemeral, abstract story, leaving the visuals, particularly her love of close-ups, to fill in the colours of such a black and white narrative. Stories of prostitutes and escorts could easily become political or didactic, but she merely leaves you with an emotional impression, neither confirming nor denying your suspicions.

The scene juxtapositions pack a punch (one moment Charlotte is being penetrated with a bottle, the next Anne is masturbating on the floor, while one moment Alicja is being urinated on, the next she's singing along to Spanish guitar) and Beethoven's "9th Symphony" is put to good use.

You may walk out of the cinema not quite grasping Elles' hook, but from its first jarring images (of fellatio, no less), you'll be willingly taking the bait.
(Canal)
GET IT!
Mailing List
SHARE IT!
Google+
Google Bookmarks
StumbleUpon
Reddit
Tumblr
Be the first to comment
Login
Keep me logged in
Prove You Are Not a Robot
To remove this step go back and login.

Picks

Most Popular Stories

  1. Partynextdoor - 'Partynextdoor Two' (album stream)MUSIC / VIDEO: Partynextdoor 'Partynextdoor Two' (album stream)
  2. R. Kelly Dropped from Ohio Festival After Public BacklashNEWS: R. Kelly Dropped from Ohio Festival After Public Backlash
  3. Beefs 2014: Childish Gambino Disses Kendrick Lamar, Drake, Schoolboy Q in New FreestyleNEWS: Beefs 2014: Childish Gambino Disses Kendrick Lamar, Drake, Schoolboy Q in New Freestyle

Latest Issue: Jul 14 Issue