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Irreversible

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by rosemanbridge, May 18, 2003.

  1. rosemanbridge

    rosemanbridge
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    Has anyone seen the movie "Irreversible" with Monica Belluci? It is released this week as R2 with English subtitles. I have seen some of it on the net and it looks quite disturbing. Anyone any valid opinions other that Ms Belluci looks great???;)
     
  2. PoochJD

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    HI,

    This is the controversial French drama from Gasper Noe. It's essentially a story told in reverse, about a woman who has been raped, and her boyfriend goes out for revenge.

    Having seen this at the cinema, because I wanted to know for myself what all the controversy was about, I have to admit that it was one of the most boring and pathetic films in recent years!

    The rape scene lasts 9 minutes, and is actually just really, really boring! You don't feel sorry for the character, but you do feel sorry for Ms Belluci for having to suffer such crap in the sake of art! In my opinion, the film doesn't depict rape in as nasty a way as I suspect it probably is for real rape victims. The film shows Ms Bellucci's charcter being anally-raped, but the viewer isn't shocked, just made to sit and watch nine minutes of her screaming, whilst the rapist is shown trying to attack her. It's all very pointless, in my opinion. "I Spit On Your Grave" is a much more savage film that deals with rape, as is "The Accussed".

    The other scene, where a man has his head bashed in with a fire hydrant, is shot in such a dark and unlit club, that you can't really tell what is going on. Hence, it didn't shock me! It's certainly no worse an effect than a whole host of horror flicks, like "Braindead" (or "Dead Alive"), or the ilk.

    None of the characters are remotely likeable, and the film is incredibly dull. There's a scene on the Paris Underground, that just seems to go on, and on, and on, and on..... The characters discuss general chit-chat, but for viewers, its just chronically dull!

    The film says nothing about the society in which we live, and it says nothing for the director of "Seul Contre Tous"! If anything, I'd have to say that this is one of the worst films ever!

    To be honest, I'd rent the film first, because I think a lot of people will be expecting something that the film really isn't. If you want a better film with Ms Bellucci in it, get "Brotherhood Of The Wolf" instead, or wait for "The Matrix Reloaded" to come out.

    Pooch
     
  3. Lux

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    well I thought this would be very hard to explain but thanks to Pooch it's very easy:
    Basically the exact opposite of what pooch said and you'll have my thougths on the film.
    I found it to be a very good film with great performances a harrowing rapescene that wa struly disgusting, a film that made me feel sick, sad and also happy at times(kinda good feeling).
    It ultimately left me with a very weird feeling due to it's ending (in fact begining).
    I really recommend the film. But I would also recommend to rent it first as it's something of an aquired taste.

    And the films most important and nihilistic quote: Le temps detruit tout!
     
  4. the_pauley

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    Agree totally with Lux on this one. Found the movie to be both powerful and disturbing - all the more so because of the narrative technique used by the director. As to Pooch's not finding the rape scene nasty or shocking enough - well I find that more disturbing than the movie!

    As to the scene with the fire extinguisher - too dark to see what was going on? Huh??? What I saw was pretty horrendous. The comparison to "Braindead" is ridiculous - in that movie the gore provokes laughter - in this case it is truly appalling. Try thinking beyond make up effects and let little concepts such as context, form and content factor into the equation.

    And to even suggest that such safe, PC Hollywood fare as "The Accused", or sleazy exploitation tat like "I Spit On Your Grave" are more savage movies is, frankly, ludicrous.

    Nihilistic and uncomfortable viewing, but one of the year's best. Thank Gawd the Europeans are still making movies for grown-ups.
     
  5. KRRK

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    The comparison to 'I Spit On Your Grave' is one of the most ludicrous things I have ever heard. Pooch, have you actually seen "I spit..." or are you judging it by the title alone? If you had seen it, you would have realised that this is a classic example of the 'rape as entertainment' type film that was popular in the 1970's. Far from being 'savage', it's as cornball and soppy as they come, and a million miles away from 'Irreversable' in sentiment and tone. I am sorry you found the rape scene 'boring', perhaps a bit more titilation would have made you 'enjoy' it more...
     
  6. PoochJD

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    Hi Folks,

    1) I stand by comments about "Irreversible". Having seen it at the cinema, I thought it was one of the worst films I'd seen in a long, long time. I apologise if my comments offended or disturbed anyone, but I still believe that this was not a harrowing film.

    2) Yes, I have (and own) the uncut version of "I Spit On Your Grave". And yes, it is an exploitation film, but I still found it dealt with the topic of rape, better than "Irreversible" did, despite what you folks think.

    3) The rape scene in "Irreversible" (to me) was not disturbing. It was nine minutes of seeing poor Monica Belluci having to act as if she were being raped. I genuinely do NOT believe that a real rape in real life would be like this. I believe that a real rape against a woman, would be FAR MORE disturbing, more brutal, and thus more distressing!

    4) KRRK - I don't expect any film that deals with the issues of rape (against women or men) to be titillating. But it does need to be at least realistically dealt with, and I still feel that Gasper Noe did not deal with the issue in a way that was disturbing enough, to "get the point across".

    5) Simply put, I think "Irreversible" is not a good film, in any way, shape or form. It was badly acted, with a terrible script, and a chronically bad scene of what the director thought rape is like for a woman!

    Again, I apologise if my comments seem crass or distasteful to some of you, but I stand by what I say! This film did not work for me. It did not depict rape in a way that made me think that this is what a rape would be like - I think it would be much, MUCH worse! All I thought, when I saw the film, was how crap the whole thing was. And as for the fire-hydrant murder, pah! What a naff effect, and not disturbing. The reason it wasn't disturbing, is because I don't care about the characters in the film, and if I don't care about any of them, then how can Noe expect me to think that one of them being bashed over the head to death, is going to elicit feelings of shock and distaste in me?!

    Sorry folks, but I think we'll have to agree to disagree on this one.

    Oh, and please DO NOT get the impression that I believe that rape is not harrowing, or horrendous, or sick or distasteful! It is! And I would happily put-to-death anyone who did rape or attempt to rape another human being. So please don't think I am trivialising the topic of what is an extremely controversial subject.

    Pooch
     
  7. neilo

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    I thought this film was very disturbing..almost made me physically sick ..the rape scene was harrowing and the "end" beignning scene was ..well I thought nothing shocked me , but that had my jaw on the floor ..."spoiler" .......................................................................................................................
    ..................................................... Pooch I aprreciate your views but seeing a woman being kicked in the stomach and have her face beaten to a pulp was pretty disturbing and brutal to me
     
  8. KRRK

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    "I spit on your Grave" is little more than a cartoon. With the rape presented as entertainment followed by the inevitable 'revenge', which is, of course, presented with as much titilation as possible for the jaded male viewer. If this is your idea of realism, then I am happy to differ with your views. The rape scene in 'Irreversable' has been praised by many Rape Crisis organisations for portraying the crime in a way far removed from the 'hollywood' idea of it as entertainment.
     
  9. the_pauley

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    I've read some ridiculous remarks on these forums, but this one takes the cake:

    "It was nine minutes of seeing poor Monica Belluci having to act as if she were being raped".

    Duh! Acting - yes??? So how would it be "improved" for you? Maybe if she was really raped for the camera? How much more disturbing does it actually have to get? An unflinching anal rape at knifepont, a woman physically and verbally abused in amost brutal fashion, savagely kicked in the face and stomach, then her face smashed to a pulp on the concrete floor? Just how much more do you need to see? Come on - tell us how much worse it could be?

    As KRKK stated, the scene was praised for its realism by many women and organizations with direct experience of rape. But you know better than someone who's been raped, huh? Course you do - you've watched "I Spit On Your Grave"... The depiction of rape and it's aftermath in that movie is so ludicrous that it would be howlingly funny if it were not so sickeningly exploitative.

    As to the fire extiguisher scene - given the reverse narrative stucture of the movie the true horror of the scene only becomes apparent in retrospect (although even in isolation it is brutal in the extreme) and is due to its casual manner combined with what we subsequently glean in the course of the narrative about the perpetrator (those will be the "talky" bits you missed the point of Pooch). Sometimes the greatest horrors are the most banal. Just what does it take to float your boat mate? You compare this to something in "Braindead"? Truly scary!

    Given your recommendation of "Last House On The Left" on another thread and your comments on "I Spit On Your Grave", your view of "realism" seems to be shaped by truly crappy "exploitation" movies - I deliberately refuse to ennoble them by use of the term "horror". There's nothing frightening or realistic about those two movies - they're just shoddily executed, deadly dull and distatestful. The only horrific thing about "I Spit..." is the filmakers' crass exploitation of the subject matter for titilation and entertainment. When I worked in the video trade the most disturbing thing where this movie was concerned was the amount of geezers with tattoos on their faces and pit-bulls on a leash who brought it back to the shop declaring "'Ey up, that were ******' ace! Anymore like that mate?"

    As to the acting - get real man! The performances in the movie were superb, with Vincent Cassell in particular giving a powerhouse performance. Even those who were offended by the movie and violently opposed to it at its Cannes' screening acknowledged that his performance was one of the year's best. So which one of the cast in "I Spit On Your Grave" do you think was overlooked in the Oscars?

    "The characters discuss general chit-chat, but for viewers, its just chronically dull!"

    It wasn't for me or anyone who watched the movie with me on the several occasions I've seen it. There isn't a wasted, non-relevant moment in the movie. Translation: you missed the point. Given your taste in movies, any kind of allusion, subtext or non-expositional dialogue is going to pass you by completely.

    If these movies are your idea of "realism" then stick with the kiddy fare and leave films like "Irreversable" for the grown-ups. It contains more thematic explorations, subtext and ideas in one scene than movies like "Last House..." and "I Spit..." could ever manage or aspire to in their entire running time.

    This isn't an attempt to dissuade you from your POV. I don't dispute your lack of reaction to the horrors in this movie. I do honestly believe you when you say you weren't shocked, horrified or disturbed by what you saw.

    That in itself is what is so profoundly disurbing about this thread - more so than anything in "Irreversable"...

    "Bowling For Columbine" anyone?
     
  10. FoxyMulder

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    hey pauley don't hold back say wot u really feel

    one more point to add though to those that say the rape scene wasnt realistic, at the end of the scene the actor clearly has an erection which is pretty realistic id say wouldn't you ?

    the film was a worthy serious attempt to tackle a hard subject matter, i didnt find it entertaining but it was well acted and perhaps the director achieved his goal which was to not entertain but to tell a story which is thought provoking and will make people think, what would u do if this happened to you or someone u know ?
     
  11. Squirrel God

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  12. the_pauley

    the_pauley
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    Oh dear! Just followed your link Squirrel - it just gets worse doesn't it?

    :rolleyes:
     
  13. KRRK

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    Best quote evah!
     
  14. PoochJD

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    Right!

    This whole thread seems to be taking a distinct turn away from commenting on the film, and turning into a personal attack on myself! ( :mad: and :confused: )

    Firstly, to those who disagree with my viewpoint, I have no problem. However, to "The_Pauley", who has decided that I am somehow deserving to be verbally chastised for expressing my opinions, then I simply won't tolerate that! :nono:

    Those who know me long-term via the AVForums, know that I have expressed many opinions, good and bad, throughout the last two-and-a-half years or so. Those same people probably also know that I have forthright opinions, but I can also accept when others disagree with me. I never try to force someone to accept what I say. I simply comment and offer my opinion, nothing more, nothing less!

    When people like "The_Pauley" come on here, and decide to personally attack me, then I'll take offence to that! I have no problems with people disagreeing with me. I have no problems if someone believes that I am completely wrong, but to start slating me, just because I have offered an opinion is completely unwarranted. :mad:

    Pauley claims my remarks were ridiculous. I'm not an idiot! I am 100% aware that Ms Bellucci is an actress, and her portrayal of a rape victim, was just that - her acting in a film. Stating that "if she was really raped for the camera" would somehow please me, shows how insensitive and crass your comments are! If you had been a little more intelligent, I think you would have realised that my comment referred to the fact that it was my opinion that Ms Bellucci acting the part of a woman being raped, didn't seem real. Not because the rape didn't take place for real, but because I don't believe that anyone can genuinely portray what a real rape victim goes through - physically, psychologically and emotionally! The same rule would apply, if I asked any other actor or actress to play the part of a blind person, or a black person, or someone with a speech impediment. Unless you have genuine, real-life experience, I believe there are some things that actors simply can't portray for the silver screen.

    I still do not believe that this is what a real rape would be like. And, because I (as a cinema-goer) didn't care for any of the characters, I felt nothing when I saw her character being raped on screen for nine minutes.

    This is completely different to me saying that I felt that Ms Belluci was talentless; or that that scene wasn't disturbing enough; or that maybe if Ms Belluci had genuinely been raped for the sake of the film, then I would have felt something! This is NOT what I am saying.

    Now, KRRK may have stated that the film has been praised for its alleged realism of the depiction of rape. That's a comment I am happy to accept as being truthful. However, I have never, EVER asserted that I somehow know better of what rape is like! Not once have I written anything in this forum, ever, that has said anything even remotely close to that! So I would appreciate it, if you didn't put words in my mouth, and try to twist my words, just to fulfil your own argument!

    All I have ever said, is that in my own, personal opinion, this film is rubbish, and the rape scene unrealistic. Having never been raped, or experienced someone being raped, it would be completely inappropriate for me to comment on whether what I believe to be a realistic portrayal of rape, equates or not to the depiction that is shown in "Irreversible". I am only saying that it is my opinion.

    With regards to the discotheque scene, again, it is only my opinion, that I felt that this scene wasn't any more brutal than the gore seen in some other horror films. I also said, that it was my opinion, that because the scene takes place in a very dark, nighttime setting, you barely see anything. This is a valid point. My "horror" threshold is going to be different to yours, Pauley! What you consider sick or horrific, will be different to mine. Just because I didn't find that scene particularly explicit, or whatever, doesn't mean to say that I wanted it to be even more explicit, or that I am somehow perverse for not finding it graphic. Critics nowadays, tend to embellish many things, when they write their reviews. Of course they're going to say that a scene in something like "Irreversible" is ultra-explicit, because many of them want to get their names in the papers, and get their names known for writing controversial statements. Is it really such a big deal, in the grand scheme of things, whether you find "Irreversible" a more realistic rape film, than "Last House On The Left" or "I Spit On Your Grave"?!

    My view of realism is NOT shaped, by what you crudely term "truly crappy exploitation movies". I get the distinct impression, Pauley, that anything that isn't artistic in someway, or makes some kind of poignant social comment, is somehow "less" of a film.

    You see, the thing is, exploitation films can make just as valid a point on a topic, as any literate, and critically-acclaimed director can. But because exploitation makers are considered to be "lesser" people, within the realm of cinema, their entire output is always slated as being degenerative, worthless. Why is that, Pauley? What makes Noe have any more valid an opinion about rape, than what Wes Craven says about it in "Last House..." or Meir Zarchi in "I Spit..." or even Jonathon Demme in "The Accussed"?! Enlighten me as to why Gasper Noe's opinion is somehow superior.

    Your collectively lumping me together with "the amount of geezers with tattoos on their faces and pit-bulls on a leash", I consider to be extremely insulting! :thumbsdow You don't know me! You don't know anything about me as a person, nor do you know anything about what I like or dislike, what I believe or disbelieve. For all you know, I may not be anything like who I come across as, on this forum. You don't know me, so please don't try to claim otherwise!

    You liked the acting, I didn't. So? I thought the general chit-chat between the characters was chronically dull, and you didn't. Fine. I'll accept that. You believe that the film is very good, and I don't. Okay, that's fine too.

    Either way, it matters not whether you agree or disagree with me, but the fact that you have reacted very volatilely, just because I expressed my opinion on the film. You have taken my comments on the film, and twisted them to try to fit into your offensive argument/opinion that because I didn't find the film offensive or valid, that somehow that makes me less of a person, and someone who should somehow get out more! You're also trying to imply that because I haven't seen the movie more than once, and therefore not understood the "message" being spoken to me by Noe, that I am somehow thick, and have "missed the point". You are wrong on both counts!

    I would have loved to have seen the point that Noe was making. In fact, I watched the film very closely, and listened to the BBFC debate about it afterwards (when I went to see it back in Feb 2003). But sometimes, people don't get the point. Sometimes, people disagree on what is or is not a valid point. Sometimes, directors are deliberately trying not to make a point at all.

    In fact, Noe could be having one bloody great laugh at all of us, because he has made a lot of money, and got his name all over the media, simply because of a film he has made, which he may never have intended to be socially-redeeming, or morally valuable! To him, it could just be one big joke on cinema-goers, and human beings! After all, who is being tricked, and who is the trickster - him or us?

    Lastly, I am angry that you believe that "I Spit.." and "Last House..." are in your opinion "kiddy fare", and that by some magical and godlike list, that "Irreversible" is more valid. If you really do believe that only artistic films have merit, then it is you who has a problem with film, and not me. I don't claim that "Irreversible" is any more worthy than "Baise-Moi", or any less worthy. Ditto with "I Spit..." and "Last House...". All have points that make them worthy or worthless on the subject of rape.

    Ultimately though, none of this matters.

    Rape in real life, is horrific! Someone walking down the street, in real life, with a gun, would have me scared out of my wits. A film, though, is just that - a film: a set of moving images, designed to entertain. If I want to find out about real=life then I will watch something like "Bowling For Columbine", or "The Field, USA" or a hundred-and-one other documentaries and factual films. However, I don't try to kid myself that "Irreversible" is trying to make a valid point. Noe has made the film, to make money, period! He's done it, to entertain, and to stick his fingers up at you and I, and to cause a rucus! He's succeeded! The fact his film is still being discussed, and censored, and banned, means he's in a win-win situation!

    I may be young, but I'm not nieve or stupid.

    I am happy to agree-to-disagree with you, on this film. You liked it, loved the acting, and believed it made a valid social comment about rape. Fine. I disagree with that, but I'm not going to force you to accept my opinio, nor anyone else. It is, after all, just that - an opinion!

    Just because I find one scene in a movie less disturbing than you, shouldn't really matter. Some films do make a valid, social point to me. Others do not. "Irreversible", for me, was one of those films that did not!

    So, accept that our opinions differ and restrain yourself from publically berating me, or find somewhere else to go and start an argument. Either way, this thread and AVForums as a whole, is not the place for this kind of thing to take place.

    Your outburst was uncalled for, and unnecessary. I would politely ask that you treat me with the same respect that you would wish to be treated with. If you cannot, or will not, learn to tolerate opposing views, then AVForums is not the place for you.

    Pooch
     
  15. the_pauley

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    Was it something I said? :devil:
     
  16. Lex

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    It is always unfortunate when discussions about films turn into personal slanging matches.
    My feeling here Pooch is that your strong opinions can sometimes provoke strong opinions in return. Saying that you "don't like a film" is one thing, but to say that it is the "worst films ever!" is bound to upset people who do like the film...
    In return I think some of the accusations/retorts made in your direction were unfounded & unnecesary...
    Can we try and keep off of the personal insults guys! :)
     
  17. PoochJD

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    Hi Lex,

    I have no problems if what I say provokes strong opposing opinions. That I can accept, without any issues or concerns. When it gets personal, though, as "The Pauley" (and to a certain extent KRRK as well, then that is unnecessary and uncalled for.

    If people wish to slate me for my opinions, then fine, but don't slate me just because you disagree and then make it into a personal attack!

    Pooch
     

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