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Beau travail

Posted by martinteller on May 12, 2010

A French Legionnaire sergeant stationed in Djibouti feels threatened by the presence of a strapping new recruit.  An unusual film with a free-form narrative, and homoeroticism damn near as blatant as Un chant d’amour.  Galoup’s sexuality is clear as the camera (plainly meant to represent his gaze) lingers on the glistening shirtless bodies of young men enduring rigid, and almost balletic, training routines.  His repression is clear through numerous scenes and symbols of alienation and separation.  The film certainly has a striking beauty to it at times, but Claire Denis often seems to be belaboring the point.  It’s like an exercise to see how many overt homoerotic images can she cram in there without just coming out and saying it.  The guy is gay, get it?  But if you don’t mind the languid repetitiveness of it, it can be an interesting experience.  Rating: 6


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