Straight up - this is a movie you'll want to pay close attention to, lest it lose you in its artsy complexity
Jessica has been plagued by intense and recurring dreams her entire life. This has lead her to pursue the psychophysiology of dreams (something I just recently learned was actually a thing) and shack up with a dude who studies the stuff.
At the start she gets a call from her mother informing her that her grandmother has just passed, and asks her to return home for the wake. Returning to her family home appears to have negative effects on her well being, as she quickly falls ill upon arriving. There she begins to dream, meeting her dead grandmother (who's body lies in the adjacent room for the wake) in her nocturnal landscapes; she proceeds to utilize lucid dreaming to ferret out the reason for her grammy's death, meeting some fearsome enemies and allies along the way.
And how does she do this? Ether, of course.
The strength here really isn't in the dialog or Romain Basset and Karim Chériguène's writing, but rather in Director Romain Basset's visual storytelling abilities - which are quite prodigious
Cinematography and Art Direction
Gorgeous. Stunning. Each shot is so achingly beautiful and haunting its akin to a visual roller coaster, one which the viewer has to struggle to keep up with, rocketing from one bizarrely sensual scene to the next
Remarkable, for a bunch of names I'd never seen before. Star Lilly-Fleur Pointeaux absolutely carries the film as Jessica, breathing odd life to a character in a dream state, somehow managing to evoke the ethereal quality you'd expect of someone travelling somnolent astral planes
It took me a while to decide that I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. Not because it wasn't immediately obvious that this was a brilliant film, but rather that in spite of its brilliance I was left a bit breathless, confused, and chock a bock full of questions - which many would argue make for a poor composition.
I've got to disagree here though. While normally a horror film that isn't immediately digestible leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth and thoughts of 'well that's a bit pretentious' I absolutely understand why director Romain Basset made the choices he did. And when you consider this is his first full length entry into the genre, its even more impressive.
This isn't popcorn horror. This isn't a 'sit down with friends and get blotto' kind of film. This is a phantasmagorical adventure into another realm (and just being able to string those words together makes me so happy I can't even tell you) - its literally the stuff of dreams, conjuring images you'd only ever expect to see in your minds eye, which is no easy feat.
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