french films > Ballroom



cast: Patrick Mario Bernard, Pierre Trividic, Jean Yves Jouannais, Peter Bonke, Bernard Binet, Carine Ruszniewski

year: 2002

colour: yes

certificate: 18

director: P. Mario Bernard, X. Brillat, P. Trividic

runtime: 94

"Ballroom is a troubled tale of identity and solitude, aptly set against the bleak industrial coastline of northern France. Artist René lives and works with his partner Patrick in a disused dance hall. It becomes apparent that all is not well with René, as he begins to see and hear another presence in the house: the ghostly Bernard brothers. This leads him to question sanity and reality in an existential crisis which would be equally at home in Sartrean theatre, were it not for the distinctly supernatural elements of his predicament. Framed by a careful, chilling use of light and shadow, René's story explores the limits of personal identity and selfknowledge, and how these boundaries are challenged by our relationships, our fears and the world around us. The Gothic motif of the doppelganger plays a central role, although codirector Xavier Brillat warns against pigeonholing Ballroom as an erotic or Gothic film. This reflects Brillat's view of the world as a 'bundle of different genres' - a view which Ballroom con- firms. The film is a thoughtful, provocative piece of cinema which challenges audience expectations and invites us to wonder if our universe really is as simple as we think. LM Patrick Mario Bernard graduated from art school in 1986 and works in visual arts, theatre, film and TV. Xavier Brillat studied Literature and Cinema, and worked as an assistant director for film and TV. Pierre Trividic is a film and TV screenwriter and director. This is the first feature film project for all three directors." (Cine-Lumiere/Institut Français)


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