Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Charles Berling, Sophie Guillemin, Arielle Dombasle, Robert Kramer, Alice Grey
Director: Cédric Kahn
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
A middle-aged philosophy teacher begins an affair with a young girl that drives him past the point of obsession when he realizes that he can not possess her.
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me-jane | Sydney, Australia | 01/09/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"L'Ennui is driven by a very clever idea and a curious understanding of the perverse quirks of human nature (and male sexuality.) It's classic male fantasy turned nightmare: an older man falls for a younger girl who is beautiful, naive, sexually voracious, and utterly pliant. It's a pornographic dream that gradually becomes more and more hellish to the middle-aged protaganist, who is disillusioned with life (the French call it "ennui"), and groping for some kind of meaning. For, ironically, the utterly sexually available girl cannot be possessed; she is utterly opaque, and because he cannot inhabit her mind, cannot make her feel intensely for him, he becomes neurotically obsessed by her, which, of course, leads to all kinds of abjection and abasement for him. In this, the film explores the tension between the male dream of feminine passivity, and the male nightmare of feminine impassivity.
L'Ennui falters quite a lot; it's turgid, and probably forty minutes too long, hammering the point home long after the emotional terrain of the film has been traversed. Still, it's an intriguing film, often blackly funny, insightful, and, erotic in the way only French films dare to be, all jiggling flesh and too much reality for audiences reared on the smoothed over nothingness of Hollywood."
A thought provoking film ...
me-jane | 02/24/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The plotine is basically about a philosophy professor,an unsympathethic womaniser who has the desire to do something with his life. He meets a young woman, who was a model for a painter, who died while they were having sex, he doesn't get along well with her yet he has this physical connection to her. His obsession with her and her inability to respond to him make him resort to violence, he wants to break up with her and yet he cannot. Can a person love and despise another at the same time? This film explores that premise and utilises a lot of gratuitous sex and nudity ... Overall, it was a thought provoking film and I would only recommend it to any fan of French Cinema."
me-jane | 06/07/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I think you miss the whole point of this movie if you are expecting a typical Hollywood "brainwashing" movie. This movie is French. The whole point of the movie is precisely that the woman is not slim and gorgeous like a model (as Hollywood would make you want to believe all woman should be to be desirable to men). The fact that she is chubby makes the point precisely. She is not beautiful in his eyes, she is plain and chubby but he is crazy about her, why? because he cannot posses her. (Apart from physical pleasure there is nothing he can give her to make her interested in him.) And the farther away she is emotionally the more he wants her, and the more obsessed he gets with her. It has nothing to do with the outer physical beauty --she has managed to possess him in every way, without the "beauty" attributes that Hollywood movies would want to instill in the audiences. Her character has weaknesses as to the emotional and that is what drives him crazy about her. This movie is a great awakening into the deeper psyche of men."
me-jane | 12/04/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"What a strange movie! Prix Delluc 1998, a perfectly honorable artsy French prize, but it certainly spares you no graphic sex scene, nor the buttocks of Charles Berling (a favorite actor of mine)nor the bosoms of coy Sophie Guillemin. Sometime, you think you hit upon some deeply philosophical statement, and in the next scene you are wondering if you are watching a parody of the genre. Hilarious dialogue at times (without meaning to be, I am sure..), and hilarious situations, though I am sure it is not the moviemaker's intention to create mirth. All in all, great photography, beautiful colors, realistic bits of Paris's life, and fabulous acting. But would I recommend it to a friend without a certain sense of humor? Well...."