Thursday, March 22, 2018

Elle (Paul Verhoeven): Reviews from the Curaçao Film Festival 2017 #CIFFR

Friday, April 7th, 2017, 21:15

Oh, how I hated this one. I should have known; Mr. Verhoeven and I rarely see eye to misogynous, chauvinistic eye. This film is, quite bluntly, about a woman who gets raped and enjoys it. Yes: enjoys it. The rape, in fact, turns her on so much that she deliberately goes after the rapist—not to exact vengeance, mind you (or castrate him, or cut his throat in the middle of the night), but to get raped again. And again.

And the idiot the director has the balls to call it a film about female empowerment. I suppose that, in Mr. Verhoeven's world, the only power women need to aspire to is that of loving their abusers.

The female lead, Isabelle Huppert, won Best Actress at the Golden Globes last year. And well deserved. She managed to translate into reality the twisted, masturbatory fantasies inside the cesspool that must be Verhoeven's head.

Unless you're looking to be profoundly disgusted—as if the world weren't offering enough of that already—do yourself a favor and skip this one.


  1. Well, your review settles it for me. I'm not watching or getting near this one. Need some redeeming quality/element, even for a dark subject matter.
    Thanks, Guilie.

    1. I spoke to a few people—even women—who did like this, so perhaps I'm wrong... It just seemed so totally unrealistic, you know? My suspension of disbelief shattered at the first scene, and despite the skilled craftsmanship in production and the excellent performances, it just shattered more and more as the story progressed. *Sigh*...

  2. I don't need any more convincing...

    1. It's a shame, really... This had all the ingredients for a powerful (and truly empowering) film. But maybe it was that one extra ingredient—the director—that soured everything else. Happy to help steer you away from a doozie, though :)


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