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Review: One to Another

Pascal Arnold and Jean-Marc Barr’s film cannot be appreciated without some measure of guilt.

1.5
One to Another
Photo: Strand Releasing

Pascal Arnold and Jean-Marc Barr’s One to Another cannot be appreciated without some measure of guilt. This oh-so-French account of a pretty boy’s murder makes a spectacle of its young twentysomething cast’s plump buttocks, pert nipples, uncut sausages, and striking Gallic features. The end credits, perhaps defensively, state that the film is based on a true story, though you wouldn’t know it from the ridiculous philosophical patter that falls like horse dung from Lucie (Lizzie Brocheré) and her brother Pierre’s (Arthur Dupont) mouths. The directors-cum-chicken-hawks seek to convey the youthful sense of curiosity of these pretty young things in the very fiber of the film, cutting back and forth in time so as to exude a sense of insecurity and danger. The look of the film is so unassuming it’s almost beautiful, but there is no spinning the pretentious dialogue and over-heated sexual anecdotes into gold. In one scene, Pierre not only promises Baptiste (Nicolas Nollet) that he will show him how to fuck their mutual girlfriend, but he gives his friend—and occasional fuck buddy—a strawberry-flavored condom to cover up the puke on his breath. When Pierre turns up dead with some unknown man’s spunk on his shirt, Lucie starts sniffing for answers, which proves difficult because her brother fucked everyone in sight; only his mother and a possibly mentally impaired blond boy seem to have escaped unscathed. Consider Lucie a nymphomaniac Nancy Drew and her microscope her very hungry vagina: Amid seducing Arab-hating hotties and casual acquaintances for information about Pierre’s death, she reminisces about her brother’s need to engage with life through sex and his uncanny ability to teach her things (his cremation is apparently part of the syllabus that explains how the human body burns). The filmmakers make everything in the lives of these characters about sex, and though there is something intriguing about the idea of Pierre’s guileless sexual agency rousing the rage of the very people he loves unconditionally, the incessant philosophical reflection of these young boys and girls does not transcend the comically, pornographically annoying.

Cast: Lizzie Brocheré, Arthur Dupont, Guillaume Baché, Pierre Perrier, Nicolas Nollet, Valérie Mairesse, Karl E. Landler, Mathieu Boujenah, Jean-Christophe Bouvet, Pierre Beziers, Antoine Coesens, Guillaume Gouix Director: Pascal Arnold, Jean-Marc Barr Screenwriter: Pascal Arnold Distributor: Red Envelope Entertainment and Strand Releasing Running Time: 95 min Rating: NR Year: 2006 Buy: Video

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