Twelve-year-old overweight Anaïs lives in the shadow of her beautiful older sister, Elena. The ever observant Anaïs watches on as her sister’s innocence is stripped away when she becomes prey to a conniving Italian law student.
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Disturbing, penetrating, outrageous, brilliant. I saw this in a theatre in L.A. when it first opened. There is nothing else like it. The almost oracular dementedness of teen obsession and logic is right there. Breillat blows up conventions right and left; but not just to shock. It's the conventions of society--our Western Society--that she really destroys.
A lot of talk about the ending here... All I'll say is that it rattled me to my core. This movie is a powerful portrayal of youth, sibling rivalries, and fleeting love. I liked the pacing of the movie; it's slow but never uninteresting.
Rewatch after about 12 years or something. Unfortunately lacks the sthenia of Breillat's best films and gets awkward in the last 20 minutes when it suddenly becomes a horror film (I get it; it's ultimately about psychological/physical violence against women, but it's clumsy). It's disheartening because for many Americans this is the 'entry point' for Breillat (it's a Criterion movie), yet it's merely a palimpsest.
The dramaturgy here does not stem from valuable insight but rather from preconceived notions of character, age and sexual behavior, but there's no denying that the film's strictly theoretical narrative and mindset provide a stimulating journey into a philosphical perspective that could have been written on the head of a pin.
Catherine Breillat is really something. Fat Girl goes deep in its ambitions - filming this kind of raw state of sexual discovery is very tough, in that point Fat Girl is really good. However, some things didn't caught me, despite the horrible sound mixing, the plot turned out meaningless to me as well as the characters who resemble dolls. And not...a knockdown end not always save a movie.
Though Breillat is a great cinematic craftsman and a woman to admire (intellectually), this film rather offended me (I cannot stomach kids used in film in this way). However, Breillat tells it like it is and manages to raise strong questions: sex/virginity/relationships in today's patriarchal society, alienation, narcissism, dysfunctionality. And the cherry on top: was Anais the one who was raped or was it Elena?