Elle (2016) Sunday, 22 September 2019

Elle (2016)

Additional Info

  • Rating:

    MA15+: Strong themes, sexual violence, sex scenes, coarse language and nudity.

  • Starring:

    Isabelle Huppert, Laurent Lafitte, Anne Consigny, Charles Berling, Virginie Efira, Judith Magre, Christian Berkel, Jonas Bloquet, Alice Isaaz, Vimala Pons, Raphaël Lenglet, Arthur Mazet, Lucas Prisor

  • Directed by:

    Paul Verhoeven

  • Running time:

    130 minutes

  • Rated:

    MA15+ (Australia), NR (UK), R (USA)


    A woman is brutally raped (multiple scenes), beaten, smacked, thrown to the ground, head-slammed, throat-grabbed, victimised. People are hit with objects, stabbed, tackled, dragged, kicked, slapped, face-grabbed, kneed, pepper-sprayed. Home invasion; man in ski mask. Suicide reference (man hanged himself; act not seen). Smashed objects, clothes torn, wall banged in anger. People play a violent video game (female characters are grabbed/stabbed/anally penetrated by a tentacle). A bird smashes into a window. A bird is near-eaten by a cat. A video shows beetles being crushed underfoot. A woman reverses her car into another vehicle; a car window is smashed; a vehicle swerves and crashes into woodland. A woman dumps a food tray on another woman. A woman describes how food was thrown at her in public. Archival footage shows murder victims, serial killer/killing spree discussed; murder of people/dogs/cast mentioned. A woman accuses her partner of hitting her. Parole hearing, rather gouge out eyes, poison her mentioned. A woman says "I'll kill you" to her mother. Shooting practice. Screaming, arguing, yelling, shouting. Blood/gore: Exposed skull. Archival news footage shows bloodied corpses in body bags. Corpse in coffin. Bloody legs/hands/knee/cuts/bubbles/clothing/head/faces/skull/hair/brain/objects; blood spatter. Blood extraction (needle seen entering skin/blood filling syringe). Bruising, bandage, wound-dressing. A woman collapses. Patient in ambulance, hospital bed, flatlining, IV drips, breathing tube, brain images, patient on crutches, patient in coma. Gutting an orc, feeling the blood on your hands, losing blood, placental abruption, stillborn baby, dead children, eat goat's innards, major stroke, aneurysm, cardiac arrest, torn anterior cruciate ligament mentioned.


    A woman is raped (several scenes/flashback). A woman receives obscene text messages/videos. Couples have bedroom sex. A woman performs manual stimulation on a male. Masturbation, crotch-rubbing, leg-rubbing, orgasm, infidelity. Sperm on sheets. Flirting, kissing (m-f; f-f), caressing, undressing. Nude women (frontal/side/rear views), nude men (genitals not seen), exposed breasts, nude bottom, women in lingerie, man in underwear, cleavage, people in exercise gear/bath/shower/towels. A female boss instructs an employee to show his penis. Image of girl in underwear. Statue of woman in lingerie. STD, PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis), period, condom, HIV, sperm, boner, striptease mentioned.


    Alcohol (spirits, champagne, wine); intoxication. Smoking. Dealing weed, GTN (glyceryl trinitrate) mentioned.


    C-word, f-words, s-words, a-words, b*tch, bastard, cr*p. Name-calling (loser, bimbos, cretin, nutjob, creep, moron etc). Slang for breasts and male genitals. Religious references and exclamations (oh my God, hell, Jesus).


    Rape, victimisation, sex, consent, obsession, empowerment, gratification, exes, infidelity, relationships, video game development, photography, serial killers, death, grief, paternity, Christmas, neighbours.


    Dead mother, dead father, dead neighbour, dead husband. Birth scene (off-camera). Engagement. Job loss, birth pain, relationship breakup mentioned. Hospital, prison, cemetery settings. Spreading ashes, spitting. Cat, bird, deer. French language (subtitles). Based on the novel "Oh..." by Philippe Djian.


    Seductive, upsetting, complex, gripping, disturbing, brazen, dangerous, electrifying, provocative, outrageous, bold, uproarious, galvanic, remarkable, breathtaking, corrosive, funny, layered, suspenseful, unsettling, twisted, audacious, dark, classy, impressive, surprising, polished, needling, ingenious, mischievous, unnerving, subversive. Virtuous/alluring/charismatic/exceptional/standout/enthralling/riveting/incredible/ambiguous/witty/bold performance by Isabelle Huppert, deliciously morbid script, expert storytelling, rich/credible characterisation, lush/swooning/suspenseful score.


    Won't be for everyone.

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