Inspired by Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s The Idiot and intended as “a homage to the great writer,” this film is set in modern France rather than 19th century Russia. This is a story of Léon (Francis Huster), who has been recently released from a mental asylum and claims to be a descendant of a Hungarian prince. On his way from Hungary to France, he meets Mickey (Tchéky Karyo), a hood who has committed a successful bank robbery and plans to take brutal revenge on the brothers Venin for what they did to his girlfriend Mary (Sophie Marceau). Léon can hardly understand what Mickey is up to but he follows him everywhere and soon falls in love with Mary. This odd love triangle resolves in a tragic ending. The frantic pace of the film’s action can be compared to that of a runaway, hell-bound train. The colors and sounds go out of control, and violence abounds — all of which is intended to convey to a viewer the craziness of the time.
In “L’Amour Braque”, Étienne Roda-Gil has known how to find words, and Andrzej Zulawski the images, which revive in us a strange resonance which has the sweetness of a dream and the familiarity of a memory. And, whatever the story is that these words and images tell, the important thing is this resonance, this healthy tremor that simply tells us that a world without emotions is a world without meaning.
— Michèle Halberstadt (1985)
ANDRZEJ ZULAWSKI’S L’Amour Braque (Limpet Love) is the story of a hideously bloody vendetta, of bonds of friendship between two men from opposite backgrounds and of love within an eternal triangle. Intended as homage to Dostoyevsky and loosely based on his novel ‘The Idiot’, L’Amour Braque is a mad love-triangle: Léon (The Prince Of Idiots), Marie (The Virgin Whore), and Mickey (The Immoral Gangster). Zulawski’s postmodern existentialist adaptation is presented with an intense sense of visual style suggestive of the hyper-realistic and chaotic world of Bande-Dessinée. Abundant with images that persist and last in memory, from start to finish the screen is filled with outbursts of energy and eruptions of emotional violence where “notions of ‘performance as madness’ are choreographed into a perverse, bloody ballet.” L’Amour Braque displays craftwork of originality and imagination in which “moments of brilliance happen under the watchful eye of a knowing master.”
Fantasporto International Film Festival, Portugal
International Fantasy Film Award, Best Film: Andrzej Zulawski
Language(s):French & English (commentary)
Subtitles:English (muxed), English, Italian (srt)