Projections - Movie Reviews

Fat Girl

The scandalous, provocative French director Catherine Breillat (Romance) is no less explicit with teens when she darkly penetrates sexuality and obesity in the insightful, yet disturbing Fat Girl.

Here, as in much of Breillat's oeuvre, many may perceive the daringly expressive film maker as angry, as a dreamy wistfulness pervades this pallid French production.

Those who usually don't watch art house or alternative cinema and are curious about Breillat's latest film will definitely have their eyes opened in this film which is more daring than Todd Solondz's Welcome To The Dollhouse.

Breillat's look into the thoughts and experiences of adolescent girls is never soft-pedaled.  Even if Fat Girl appears at times to crawl, you have to give her kudos for making the subject bracing throughout.  The neurotic expression of bulimia convocates with the "demonstration of love" and, finally, rape, in an effortless way that strongly internalizes a carnal rite of passage.

In this starkly absorbing film which has extended intimate nude scenes with un-simulated use of a condom, no-no's in studio teen films concerning sexuality are explored for full effect in a romantic, lustful discourse.

She is the chubby 12 year old who lives for eating during a holiday at the beach with her insensitive parents, and more importantly, a looker of an older sister, Elena.

Roxane Mesquida, who endows Elena with delicate nuance into the feelings of a virgin, may resemble a promiscuous Parker Posey or even a lovely, lascivious Liv Tyler.

Eventually, the game-playing with lengthy, sexual abandon shifts with the discovery of a mauve opal engagement band.  The return home of a mother and two sisters shockingly builds from a tense sequence on a slick highway.

If the roadside finale is maddening and despicable for a blind sided assault that awakens one to how Breillat can jolt in an instant, a dreadfulness is made gratuitously haunting from a sullen, astute, numbing moral indifference.

Fat Girl

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