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ENTER THE VOID (aka: SOUDAIN LE VIDE) (director/writer: Gaspar Noé; screenwriter: Lucile Hadzihalilovic; cinematographer: Benoît Debie; editors: Marc Boucrot/Jérôme Pesnel/Gaspar Noé; music: Thomas Bangalter; cast: Nathaniel Brown (Oscar), Paz de la Huerta (Linda), Cyril Roy (Alex), Emily Alyn Lind (Little Linda), Jesse Kuhn (Little Oscar), Olly Alexander (Victor), Masato Tanno (Mario); Runtime: 137; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Marc Missonnier/Vincent Maraval/Olivier Delbosc/Brahim Chioua/Pierre Buffin; IFC Films; 2009-France/Germany-in English)
It’s an exploitation art film about a spiritual undertaking of the afterlife, as seen through the eyes of a druggie.

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

The French-Argentinian filmmaker Gaspar Noé (“Irréversible“/”I Stand Alone“), son of anArgentinian artist, writes and directs a far-fetched, freaky, brutal, and very loose symbolic adaptation of The Tibetan Book of the Dead (just mentioning the book gives the film some weight). The postmortem hallucinatory pic relates to us through the P.O.V. of a miserable low-life American killed in a drug bust. Using an annoying tilt-a-whirl camera technique (the same one Noé employed in his single shot nine-minute rape sequence in Irréversible), that leaves your head spinning as you take in the night scene in the seedy milieu of a neon lit Tokyo or how a dick looks as it enters a cunt. It’s an exploitation art film about a spiritual undertaking of the afterlife, as seen through the eyes of a druggie.

After their parents died in a car accident, the youngsters Oscar (Nathaniel Brown, as an adult) and Linda (Paz de la Huerta, as an adult) develop a close sibling bond. But they are separated in childhood, as each goes to a different foster home. In Tokyo, the adult Oscar is a DMT hallucinogendrug smoking small-time drug dealer, while his younger sister is a stripper in a nightclub. When Oscar’s wormy friend Victor (Olly Alexander) discovers he’s screwing his mom, he rats him out as a dealer to the police. When the cops kill Oscar in a drug bust, the dead druggie trips out for the remainder of the flick. It looks like a bad DMT trip, as Oscar’s soul goes out its body and soars through Tokyo until he’s reborn in his sis’s womb when she’s fucked by one of the siblings’ home boys named Alex (Cyril Roy).

The unwieldy experimental stylish film is a dreary bummer. Noé, theprovocateur, creates a film that looks different than any other film but that doesn’t necessarily make it a good film.

REVIEWED ON 12/26/2010 GRADE: C-

Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”