The enigmatic antiheroine of Olivier Assayas’s diabolical techno thriller, Demonlover (2002), suggests a female cyber-age equivalent of the archetypal Man With No Name. Diane (Connie Nielsen), as she calls herself, is a coolly seductive industrial spy of ambiguous sexuality, with an invented résumé, who sometimes speaks in riddles. During a romantic dinner with Hervé (Charles Berling), her suspicious but lustful boss at a Paris-based multinational conglomerate, she declares: ”No one sees anything, ever. They watch but they don’t understand.” [Read more…]
The beggar on the New York subway has a body truncated at the waist and he rolls on a cart, chanting “I have no legs!” in a singsong as he passes. Just for a moment, he attracts the notice of Telly (Leo Fitzpatrick) and Casper (Justin Pierce), who look young and healthy but are actually much more damaged than this legless man.
As Larry Clark’s Kids (1995) so harrowingly demonstrates, these two are part of a spiritually dead teen-age culture built on aimlessness, casual cruelty and empty pleasure. Mr. Clark’s vision of these characters is so bleak and legitimately shocking that it makes almost any other portrait of American adolescence look like the picture of Dorian Gray.