Favorite films

  • Belle épine
  • The Captive
  • Columbus
  • Tideland

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  • Female Agents

    ★★★

  • Mama Weed

    ★★★½

  • Jolt

    ★★★

  • Thief

    ★★★½

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  • Exotica

    Exotica

    ★★★★

    For the 21st edition of Collokino, Marc Dottavio brings the enigmatic Exotica to discuss.

    Find an index of all the conversations here.

  • Sweat

    Sweat

    ★★★★

    I was never under the impression this was going to be a hit piece on dumb influencer culture, as some assumed. From the first frame, it never takes that tone. As the social media fitness phenom Sywia Zajac, Magdalena Koleśnik exudes an inner sweetness, and an outer tenacity, that ensures a fun film ahead.

    Easily confused as a documentary, it’s not until the second act that it reveals itself as an indisputable work of fiction. It hits on loads of…

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  • Female Agents

    Female Agents

    ★★★

    Elegant costuming, especially with the Nazi fucks. Should I call it serviceable? Sure, it's a serviceable WWII special-ops flick, where the characters actually speak French and German, at least, but nothing accumulates throughout to mean much in the end.

    Same director here as the recent Huppert film Mama Weed. Entirely different realm, but with a similar lack of heart.

    The English-language title is an embarrassment. What exactly is so unacceptable about a straight translation of the original title Les Femmes de l'ombre - Women in the Shadows - that Female Agents is an improvement? These fucking people.

  • Jolt

    Jolt

    ★★★

    Very red, very dumb, and pretty fun. Why should rage be repressed when it's warranted?

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  • Portrait of a Young Girl at the End of the '60s in Brussels

    Portrait of a Young Girl at the End of the '60s in Brussels

    ★★★★★

    All of Akerman condensed into a single pristine hour. Michèle yearns for connection, but can’t pretend it will ever come easily to her. Defying all conventions and restraints, she presses out into the world, alone. Like so many Akerman protagonists, the more Michèle interacts with others, the more solitary she becomes. The simultaneous experiences of pain and happiness, of proximity and distance, of brightness and gloom, Akerman bestows on Michèle, played pitch-perfect by Circé Lethem. Other than Chantal herself, no…

  • Bluebeard

    Bluebeard

    ★★★★

    I really do love the flat, static tableau style of Breillat’s visual composition. It resembles precisely the mental imagery of a young girl envisioning a faery tale (I imagine). As a feminist retelling of the old French yarn, the female characters are just as accountable for their own captivity as the blue-bearded ogre (played to forlorn perfection by Dominique Thomas), if not more so.

    The women and girls condemn themselves and one another as sacrificial virgins, setting traps they then…