Dir: Jacques Doillon, Vincent Lindon, Izia Higelin, Severine Caneele | Biopic Drama | 119min | France
Jacques Doillon has demeaned a French national treasure with a film about Auguste Rodin that will disappoint those whose evocative takeaway of the sculptor’s work is his erotically-charged The Kiss.
Rodin’s work is the epitome of passion but this film coneys none of it. Cliched and bogged down with tedious scenes and boring exchanges, any vestige of joy instilled by the oeuvre of this great master will have left you by the end.
Vincent Lindon won best actor in Cannes 2015 for his honest portrait of a man at the end his tether. You will be at the end of yours at this second rate biopic. As Rodin he is a laborious, lumbering, grizzled, gruffalo lusting after his models as he copes with the derision of patrons and press. The public appalud him but he handles his newfound fame with glowering gloom.
His wife Rose (Séverine Caneele) is unimpressed with him; his lover Camille Claudel (Izïa Higelin) is left coping with her own flagging career. Doillon has sucked the life out of his characters and with the luminous memory of Juliette Binoche in Bruno Dumont’s Camille Claudel 1915 still hanging in the air, Higelin’s portrait struggles in a morass of mediocrity. If RODIN comes to a cinema near you, run straight in the other direction. MT
CANNES FILM FESTIVAL 17-28 MAY | IN COMPETITION