The Crimson Rivers, Mathieu Kassovitz (2000)

Kassovitz has a very odd CV as a director. The first of his I saw was the utterly brilliant La Haine, but who could have imagined that movie, a sort of French (and unfunny) answer to Do the Right Thing, would be followed by this chilly, cerebral, atmospheric policier (much less the wildly gothic Gothika)? At any rate, this is very enjoyable. Follows all the rules the French learned from Hollywood’s procedurals, but is also irreducibly French: the plot turns on race purity, the fetish of genius, and women driven to murderous hysteria by passion. The ending is ridiculous. Something about twins, of all things, which allows for the female lead to be literally halved into a good, passive, woman and a hysterical bitch. Guess which one gets her guts blown out?


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