Who is the captor and who is the captive? Photo: Alain
Patrick Bouchitey directed, wrote (with Jackie Berroyer) and stars in Imposture, a new film about a French literature professor who is bitter about his inability to write a novel and eaten with jealousy of a talented colleague. When a female student asks him to read the manuscript of her novel and pesters him until he finally does, he discovers a masterpiece and wastes no time in appropriating it for himself and kidnapping the young woman. We fear the worst when he drugs her and leaves her handcuffed in the filthy basement of an isolated country house, but it turns out that he needs her as much as she needs him to survive – his (really her) novel becomes a best-seller, and he is being pressured to write the next one. As their symbiotic relationship unfolds, a number of questions arise: Who is the captor and who is the captive? Who is the sadist and who is the masochist? As the kidnapper says to his victim, “We are linked for life.” This reflecting role-playing may sound schematic, but it is subtly woven into the handsomely filmed movie, which is loosely based on the novel Soy un Escritor Frustrado by José Angel Mañas. The actors, especially Bouchitey himself, are top-notch. Add a great soundtrack, and the result is an entertaining, thought-provoking film that manages to avoid the expected. While the final image is a bit too heavy-handed, the film is an interesting study in human motivations.
© 2005 Paris Update
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