Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Elle. 2016

Tangy and Delicious. Set in a beautiful Paris during Christmas this is a twisty and tangled tale of a strong business woman who is partners in a video game company which signals to us right off the bat that she runs a male oriented violent business.
The film opens with a horrible rape and assault on Michele at her lavish home, and the aftermath of this assault makes up the bulk of the film with sides, slides and detours into other areas of Michele’s life including her very testy relationships with her mother, son and ex-husband, not to mention her father who is in prison for crimes almost too horrible to think about let alone mention.
The lead is played by the great Isabelle Huppert who come February might find herself holding an Oscar in her hands. The film is twisty and complex with many references and knowing nods to Hitchcock, Chabrol and Bunuel, and even the music might remind some of the Bernard Hermann scores that he did for Hitch.
Michele is not an easy person to like, fragile, small and delicate like a bird she is also unbreakable and is almost set in stone. Some of her employees hate her and she can be duplistic and nasty when she has to be and sometimes when she doesn’t have to be . She is as we say a real piece of work.
There are dark secrets and scars both visible and hidden and for those who like thrillers with not much room for pause this is a good one to see. Directed by Paul Verhoeven with silk and scorn the film is sexy, very black and yes fun. In fact I had a great big smile on my face through most of its nearly 2 hours running time. But keep in mind that it also nasty with some really reprehensible characters and may be upsetting to some viewers so watch your step. Any film with this great actress in it is reason enough for me to see and this box of bitter dark chocolates is a perfect Christmas present for me. One of the best films of the year.


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