This is a gorgeous and seductive piece of filmmaking; a real 3-course meal. The scenes are lush and ripe, the characters are mysterious and interesting--the relationships have multiple layers. A very satisfying film with undertones, overtones and some very interesting social and personal statements.
This was an altogether pedestrian effort from Techine. The first half had a nice sprung rhythm to it and some bits of montage with good aesthetic kick, particularly during the two lovers' Skype romance. But it quickly turns into a confused mess with no destination in mind. Not very much like a sleek, swift, purposeful train, I'm afraid.
I enjoy a good non-linear story, and I enjoy thought-provoking films, but golly gee, this simply does not work. Editing is not just brusque but bizarre. The story moves in massive jerks without expressing much. It could have been a statement on trenchant issues but ends up being more like visual masturbation. Sorry. Pass.
Just...well not horrible. For the most part the story is flat and un-involving. Nothing that hasn't been done before. The only reason I continued to watch was Catherine Deneuve - she might as well have been in another film. The film that I watched when she wasn't around...wasn't good.