Director: Gaspar Noé
Year Released: 2021
Old age really isn't for sissies: film writer Lui (Dario Argento) and his psychiatrist wife Elle (Françoise Lebrun) live in a stuffed apartment, but he has heart trouble and she has memory problems, so while he's trying to do work in his study, she's out getting lost or back in the flat flushing his source material in the toilet or leaving the gas on - they have a son, Stéphane (Alex Lutz), who tries to help, but his wife is prone to "fits" and he's a drug abuser. This is a sensitive subject for me, personally - my Grandmother had dementia and passed away unable to speak in 2018 - but for the usually-irreverent Noé, it is an irony-free and totally serious look at entering the final stage of a human's life (no doubt informed by a health scare in 2020 when he had a brain hemorrhage), and the way he treats Elle's confusion (she mixes pills together because she was trained as a doctor but doesn't know what she's doing) is eerily accurate and done with a sense of detachment. The project was shot in split-screen, with each camera typically following around one of the two leads - I was a little put off by it early on, but eventually got used to it ... and came to appreciate how it would tie in with the third act when Lui "exits" (or, more accurately, fades out). Perhaps the only "real" horror movie is the one we're living through right now in our own bodies....