sexta-feira, 21 de julho de 2017

Scribe review – paranoid thriller can't deliver on promising premise

François Cluzet stars in this initially intriguing conspiracy thriller from first-time feature director Thomas Kruithof, a movie about the French far-right with the underlying paranoia of Francis Ford Coppola’s The Conversationor Von Donnersmarck’s The Lives of Others. But inexorably, and perhaps inevitably, the movie can’t build on its atmospheric setup, and the neurosis becomes a pose. Cluzet plays the conscientious Duval, a man with a drinking problem who has been out of work since a breakdown two years ago. Out of the blue, he is recruited to work for a shadowy private security firm and employed to sit in a rented room all day, transcribing audiotapes of tapped phone conversations – using an old-fashioned typewriter because computers are not secure enough. Soon Duval realises that he is a small cog in a very sinister surveillance machine. But the whole business of the typewriter isn’t entirely convincing. Wouldn’t using thumb drives and a computer disconnected from the web be better, and produce more readily searchable documents? The film also fails to make this claustrophobic scenario connect up with the rough world outside. It doesn’t quite carry off its dramatic flourishes of violence, nor Duval’s growing relationship with a woman he met at AA — Sara, a sketchily written role for Alba Rohrwacher. A bit of style, but no substance.

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