Saturday, July 12, 2008

Last night was La Question Humaine which feels like a better title than The Heartbeat Detector.

I wrote earlier this week on the work blog that our Filmhouse subscription had led me to see a lot of terrible nonsense but the odd brilliant film here and there. Last night felt like divine retribution.

I expected the film to be brilliant. I paid no attention to the reviews in advance as I vaguely remembered it had been well-reviewed when it came out. More to the point, it featured Mathieu Amalric who I think might even beat David Tennant to the head of my list of favourite actors.

And it started beautifully promisingly. Looked good. Fine acting. Nice suspenseful but surprising plot. But then it all got a bit strange with too many untied ends for my liking. By the end - desperate times - I'm ashamed to say I fell asleep and saw only highlights of the oddly disjointed ramble to the end of the film.

Now reading Philip French, I see that actually I'm just far too badly educated to have appreciated the full gravity of the story played out before us. I feel sure (history student and all that) that I should have known, for example, that the raves that the main man wanders along to recall the orgies that were such a part of SS life. I did not see this. I merely wondered why they were all laboriously taking a boat to a shambolic party in a half-empty quarry. Naive.

I think perhaps I need to see it again to appreciate all the complexities. I shall not rush.


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