Reviews - Non-Fiction
Reviewed By Ian Payne
Director Olivier Assayas set his cast in the world of publishing, with Alain, the publisher and Leonard the author, the principal protagonists. Leonard's books are described as 'autofiction' – thinly disguised episodes from his own life. As these episodes seem to centre on lurid encounters told in graphic detail, Leonard's sexual partners (including Alain's wife) are understandably anxious. As the final 15 minutes of the film show, this vein could well have been mined for an entertaining, if lightweight, comedy. Unfortunately, Assayas is fixated on the future of publishing, whether print or digital and whether tweets and texts on social media have any intrinsic artistic value. At the expense of the plot, these topics dominate the dinner party conversations that set the early tone of the film – but if like the audience in the Alhambra indicated, they do not share the Director's interest and concerns, the film falls woefully flat.
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