It was helpful to have seen Cloud Atlas (Wachowskis, Tykwer, 2012) shortly before Holy Motors (Leos Carax, 2012), as what they had in common made it easier to get a handle on the French film. I came to it without any knowledge, assuming from the title that it was American: so there were many surprises.
Like CA, it's a film which packs in a number of short films: actually many more than CA, and with fewer actors. It's mostly a tour de force performance by the one astonishing (and unattractive) actor, Denis Lavant.
It's claimed by one critic I read that it's surrealist, and there are references in the film to dreams to support that, but it's only true to some extent, in my opinion. It's a fantasy, and mostly 'experimental'—for want of a better word—in the sense that it tests the boundaries of what can be done within the length of a feature film.
It's also what I call 'metafilmic', in that it's about possibilities of making films: that's the main thing that I retain from it. Thematically, it's rather unpleasant.
Kylie doesn't help. In the last film in which I remember seeing her (Cut, Kimble Rendall, 2000) her character was killed off in the first ten minutes. In this one, it's in the last ten. In neither case is it a loss.
Holy Motors (Leos Carax, 2012)
reviews | Garry Gillard | New: 1 March, 2017 | Now: 1 March, 2017