Rating: Unrated but should be R for sexual content and adult situations
Run Time: 1 hour, 46 minutes
Poised and timeless Charlotte Rampling twists female sexuality into intricate knots in this fascinating study of aging with grace.
in keeping with her thirst for the unconventional standard heats up the
screen as middle-aged femme fatale Ellen, a
The Queen Bee has her boy-toy (Menothy Cesar as Legba) firmly under her thumb (among other places) until the arrival of angst-ridden Brenda (Karen Young), who had a brief fling with Legba years back and is back for more.
Heady with the solicitous attention of two beautiful women who come bearing gifts (in the form of cash, clothing and hot sex) Legba gets ahead of himself, roguishly playing off the sparring females while coping with the sticky wickets of his own lowly social status.
Director Laurent Cantet dabbles in the waters of change with great subtlety, gently exposing an underbelly of racism and poverty while encouraging his female leads to explore their very real fears of aging and losing grip of their ability to attract the desire of a younger man.
But Legbas backstory is a bit of a misstep a sociological study that smacks of political pretense as is the ultimate loss of focus on recklessly wanton women and their raw and base needs.
Rampling is a lean and mean machine, oozing chic from every pore and nailing the desperation she longs to quell. Her devil-may-care attitude is a tribute to the power of superficial emotion masking bottomless hurt. Young is equally anxious, a fading wallflower determined to see her fantasies through to the end with an idealistic playground as her stage.