Marine Vacth in Young and Beautiful (Jeune et Jolie)

Young and Beautiful (2013)

Young and Beautiful’s opening shot is through a pair of binoculars, watching seventeen year-old Isabelle (Marine Vacth) as she strolls along the beach. Isabelle moves from beach to Parisian hotel rooms as a part-time prostitute by the name of Lea, while director François Ozon continues to survey her from a distance. Isabelle’s reasons for going…

India Menuez and Lola Créton nude in After May (2012)

After May (2012)

Late in After May (Après Mai or Something in the Air elsewhere) one of its teenage protagonists is informed that the assault charges that had loomed over these young wannabe-revolutionaries have been dropped. You see, in an ill-advised protest, these leftist French students (in tumultuous 1971) seriously injured a security guard, causing them to spend…

Guillaume Gallienne in Me, Myself and Mum (2013)

Me, Myself and Mum (2013)

Me, Myself and Mum is a remarkable, touching, one-of-a-kind picture. Based on director/writer/star Guillaume Gallienne’s stage show, it’s like a long-winded yet enthralling party anecdote, where the storyteller’s first priority is entertaining his audience with ribald jokes and quirky asides. This is a riotously funny film, and therein lies much of its appeal. Gallienne plays…

Martyrs (2008)

Martyrs is a unique horror movie. It dabbles in the tropes and traditions of the torture-porn genre (to adopt a misleading descriptor), but inverts the tone and structure. Instead of establishing characters and gradually accumulating dread, it opens in media res with a pre-pubescent girl fleeing in terror from unexplained imprisonment. Instead of giving the…