Rust & Bone (De rouille et d'os)

Two broken people — massive, insensate Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts) and wounded, miserable Stephanie (Marion Cotillard, scrubbed of both makeup and glamor) — warily, even unconsciously approach the prospect of supplying one another's deficiencies. Not out of charity, but out of ordinary, human need and the ordinary, human response to that need. Rust and Bone is most obviously a story of bodies — powerful Ali tending to broken Stephanie in any way she likes, including sexually. But the sex, as it so often does, winds up creating complications, which are no less real for their being immaterial. She tries to draw him into the realm of moral feeling (one that will include more room for his young son); in return, he awakens her to his life of fighting and thrusting. Director Jacques Audiard offers a harsh look at a harsh world, but his camera stares without leering, searching for beauty in an unpretty landscape. 2012.

3.0 stars

— Matthew Lickona

This movie is not currently in theaters.

Comments

Alias_Jabez_Goethe Dec. 28, 2012 @ 3:25 a.m.

Trying to see what anyone could like about 'Rust and Bone'...I cannot. A drab, unimaginative plot. Aimless shaky-cam, polarized, overcast photography. Barely skin-deep characterizations, less character development than in the average After School Special. Horrendously cliched writing and poor coverage of all the essential action in the story (such as it is). Hmm...it's "edgy" alright. And it has a modicum of class consciousness. And Marion Cotillard's CGI-reduced body. What else? Mediocre pop songs. A bad joke that this is what passes for a critically acclaimed French movie these days. Shame on Landmark for their miserable lack of decent foreign movies this past year, and letting the latest Peter Jackson "epic" infest its screens. Where is Resnais's 'You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet!'? Hell, pretty much any French movie of 2012 is going to be better than 'Rust and Bone'.

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