A disturbingly relevant snapshot of contemporary tensions.
Makes an intriguingly cinematic case for showing over telling.
This audacious film from Bertrand Bonello (Saint Laurent) unfolds in two mesmerizing segments. The first is a precision-crafted thriller, following a multi-ethnic group of millennial radicals as they carry out a mass-scale terrorist attack on Paris. The second—in which the perpetrators hide out in the consumerist mecca of a luxury department store—is the director’s coup, raising provocative questions about everything that came before. Bonello stages his apocalyptic vision with stylishly roving camerawork, blasts of hip-hop, and a lip-synced performance to Shirley Bassey’s “My Way.” A 2017 Rendez-Vous with French Cinema selection.
Listen to our discussion of Nocturama and Bonello’s influences, as well as a talk with the director, on The Close-Up: