Feathers In My Head

Feathers In My Head


Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

French cinema has been obsessed with madness and, in particular, women's descent into it for years. Now, alas, the Belgians seem to be at it as well.

This film, about coming to terms with tragedy, has little new to say on the subject.

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Blanche (Sophie Musuer) and Jean-Pierre (Francis Reynaud) have a seemingly idyllic existence in a small Belgian town. They have a cute - and from the audience's point of view not too annoying, three-year-old, Arthur, and a good sex life - yet another obssession inherited from the French.

Their idyll is shattered, when, one day, Arthur decides to "migrate". Sadly, his lone foray into the adult world is brief and tragic, leaving his father devastated and his mother half-crazed with grief. She wanders the pastoral landscape looking for her son and striking a relationship with a troubled youth (Ulysees de Swaef) along the way, before returning home to sex that is tantamount to rape in the marital bed.

Even the high quality of acting fails to inject any sense into the proceedings and the portrayal of sex is deliberately vicarious, shocking and unecessarily brutal.

There are some abiding images, however, such as Blanche feeding coin after coin into a supermarket rocking horse so that her imaginery son can play on it. But for every hint of style, there are countless examples of excess, like the trio of priests who pop up singing at regular intervals.

If you try, you might keep your sanity for the duration of this rather dull, unispiring movie, but it will be tough.

Reviewed on: 16 Aug 2003
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Coping with the loss of a child by indulging in brutal sex.

Director: Thomas de Thier

Writer: Thomas de Thier

Starring: Sophie Museur, Francis Renaud, Ulysse de Swaef, Alexis Den Doncker

Year: 2003

Runtime: 100 minutes

Country: Belguim


EIFF 2003

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