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Irreversible (Version française) [Import]
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Alex and Marcus are a couple whose story is told over the course of a fateful day. The tumultuous odyssey begins with a brutal killing then unspools in reverse to reveal the horrifying events that lead to the gut-wrenching, violent climax of the opening scene. IRREVERSIBLES disturbing look at fate and destiny pushes the envelope of human emotions and takes filmmaking to another level.
Irreversible begins with the closing credits running backwards before the film begins (or ends) with Marcus (Vincent Cassell) and Pierre (Albert Dupontel) being escorted out of a gay S&M club by the cops, Marcus with his arm broken and Pierre in handcuffs. The "story" proceeds to unwind in a series of single-take scenes that unfold Memento-style, with each scene giving more context to what we have seen previously. Each scenario depicts actions, dialogue, incident, behavior, and circumstances that the lead characters might have wished didn't happen, ranging from extreme violence through awkward social situations to mild embarrassment. The central character (and possible dreamer of this whole what-if story) emerges as Alex (Monica Bellucci), who suffers the worst in a very hard-to-watch rape sequence in an underpass. Semi-improvised, the scenes all have attack and power as themes, with later/earlier conversational sequences that suggest life isn't all sexual assaults in the dark, showing equal cinematic imagination with the horrors. Arguably, this is not a film most would subject themselves to twice, but it is something that stays in the mind for days after viewing, sparking far more ideas and emotions than most wallow-in-nastiness pictures. --Kim Newman
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Another thing to be prepared for is the ghetto French. The film is subtitled, but the dialog is delivered in grunts and shouts. Fully formed sentences are rare, and the homophobia, and swearing are rampant!
The opening scene shows someone being murdered in a dark, gay, sex club, the murder weapon being a fire extinguisher... I had to look away at the end because some things can't be un-seen!!
As the movie progresses, we see what came before, the horrible rape scene that precipitated the murder. The frantic search by a crazed man for the perp. who raped and beat his girl friend.
Finally we see the beginning of the story, which is why I only give this film 4 stars. The beginning of a movie usually gives us character development, but that's something we don't need in this case, we know everybody quite well, thank you! I would have shown the beginning at the beginning, or not at all. I fast forwarded through this part, not really interested, I've seen the film!
If you like the nitty gritty; unusual films; European style; this is for you. Caution, the murder and rape scenes are TOO REAL for Hollywood!
Although I imagine that very few people will end up subjecting themselves to this film in the long run, those who do will witness an amazing piece of work in many ways. Like the movie "Betrayal" from 1983, "Irreversible" tells its story in reverse chronological order. It begins with a frenzied man racing through a gay sex club, madly searching for someone we know merely as Le Tenia. Only as the story develops - as we are taken ever further back in time - do we begin to understand what is going on: that this young man, Marcus, is seeking vengeance on the rapist who has brutally attacked his pregnant girlfriend. Noe keeps us in a state of confusion by filming the scene in such a way as to reflect the maniacal state of Marcus' revenge-obsessed mind. The camera bounces around in epileptic confusion while the audience attempts to get its bearings. Eventually, as the filmmakers backtrack to reveal the events that have led up to this moment, the camera calms down and we get to see the whole ugly story acted out in painfully graphic detail. In fact, in the rape scene itself, Noe reverses his filmmaking style 180 degrees, deliberately leaving the camera stationary and focused on the event as it plays itself out. He simply won't allow us to stop looking.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Very difficult to follow. Camera work makes you dizzy. Too bad, very good actors.Published 3 months ago by movielover
The DVD works well but the film itself is disturbing. Lots of gratuitous, extreme violence, and the annoying use of a constantly moving hand-held camera, all make a viewer like... Read morePublished 6 months ago by FilmFan2010
I really enjoyed this movie. It is incredibly disturbing in some parts as well, so only for a very mature adult audience. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Dave from BC
I saw this movie, I did not like this movie because I gave this one star. Stick to other Monica Bellucci movies.Published on March 17 2014 by Kevin Barton
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