Wednesday, March 21, 2018

"The Dreamers": Bertolucci's 2003 film set in the 1968 Paris demonstrations takes "maleness" to the edge

The Dreamers”, Bernaldo Bertolucci’s 2003 film, based on Gilbert Adair’s novel “The Holy Innocents”, seems to need a retrospect here, although I rented it a decade ago.

The title seems current because “dreamer” means something now in immigration.

In the film, Michael Pitt plays Matthew, and American student in Paris in 1968 during the riots.  He is boarding with two flaky fraternal twins, Isabelle and Theo (Eva Green and Louis Garrel).

The twins get pretty wild at times, and eventually Matthew spies on them.  He gets caught and trapped at about 51:00 in the film and gets undressed from above and below by the twins.  Later, Isabelle wants to use a razor on his crotch (at 74:00) as "proof of love".  Is this Lorena Bobbitt stuff?  Or the reverse of “Boxing Helena”?

But Matthew is a bad boy, skipping out on the riots and demonstrations.  How is he avoiding the draft?  Student deferments would end in 1969.

The DVD commentary indicates that Matthew is gay in the book but that isn’t in the film (from Hanway and Fox Searchlight).
The full film is here but requires age-verification sign-on.
Picture: By Yann Caradec from Paris, France - BNF et l'UPMC vues de la Tour Saint-Jacques, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

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