Plot: French horror film about a charming con artist that agrees to be with, and do cons with a former victim.
Thoughts on the film:
• With films such as this and Spain’s I Saw The Devil, I feel international horror treats sexuality very differently. It’s a part of life, more sensual and passionate, as opposed to most American horror films’ loveless sex scenes, “nudity for nudity’s sake”. Perhaps it’s showcasing lovemaking featuring normal, regular, older people, not reserved for young, gorgeous movie starlets.
• There’s also scenes with non-sexual nudity, such as a (recently murdered) body and cleaning up after a kill.
• Gloria cleans cadavers at the start of the film, and blurrily focuses on a corpse’s genitals. Didn’t appreciate it.
• Gloria gets rolled extremely quickly – what seems like 1-2 dates, is begging to throw all of her cash at him and nonchalently leaves her young daughter with a stranger. She literally dashes up the stairs to get her life savings. Although by the end her character is so unhinged it seems plausable. To aid the story, she fobs off her children onto her sister to become Michel’s sister in future cons.
• Michael (Laurent Lucas) has a great conning system, and this is his business, but he makes a completely inane decision agreeing to do this with Gloria. OK, she’s the first woman to want in on it, but she is clearly unable to deal with the concept of seducing and ripping off women – emotionally bellowing out her frustrations, and literally throwing a tantrum punching herself and her bed. Michael does a silly face/Humphey Bogart impression to cajole her, treating her like a 2 year old, and like a 2 year old, it works. She repeatedly shows she’s incapable of doing these cons with Michael. From my perspective, it’s obvious he doesn’t love her (he rolled her and moved on to the next victims initially) but he sticks with her.
• Oddly there’s act titles (e.g. “Act 2: Marguerite”) which just reminded me that it’s a movie.
• There were also musical sequences with little to no dialogue which broke up the acts just fine.
Michael is also at fault, unwilling to con women without bedding them, leading to a jealous rage by Gloria. When she’s very far gone, I’m shocked he doesn’t kill her, and live a new life with his last potential victim and her daughter, both of whom he shows affection for.
Overall: I liked this one. It doesn’t get the recommendation but it’s definitely a decent watch, and different from a lot of horror films.