Anatomy of Hell
- Original title
Anatomie de l'enfer
- Running time
- 77 min.
Catherine Breillat. Novel: Catherine Breillat
Giorgos Arvanitis, Guillaume Schiffman
CB Films, Flach Film
Drama | Erotic
- He doesn't like women. She will pay him to look at her, as she says, 'from the angle from which she should never be viewed'. It will cost you, he says. She says: I'll pay you. So begins Anatomie de l'enfer, based on Breillat's own novel Pornocratie. Following this post-night club encounter, the film moves to its sole location: a house in the middle of nowhere, perched on the cliffs. Over four nights, the man makes his way to this sparsely decorated house to meet this beautiful woman. If the nature of their encounter would seem to follow the formula of an erotic film, Breillat takes us far beyond such a mundane premise, as one would expect from a film maker who over ten films has explored, often with searing intensity and a relentless gaze, the relationship between men and women and the nature of female desire. While the spare interiors, the careful arrangement and framing of these bodies in space, and the enormously delicate photography make this perhaps Breillat's most composed, painterly film, Anatomie de l'enfer also takes us to the end of the road that began so directly with her first film. `This time I have decided to see it through to the end. I have decided that I couldn't go any further, that the Xth would be the conclusion of a decalogue. The X of X-rated film.' Catherine Breillat once again proves herself to be one of the most risk-taking and challenging of contemporary directors. With her characteristically unflinching gaze and courage, Breillat takes her exploration of sexuality, desire and the relationship between men and women to the limit. A pure, painterly, often surreal study in sex and the body.
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