Boarding Gate

"Weak"

Boarding Gate Review


Asia Argento plays a former prostitute cum corporate assassin who decides to murder her old flame in Olivier Assayas' wasteful Boarding Gate, and that's just about all I can say about the movie. Michael Madsen plays a perverse bigwig too, but he's done that before; Assayas shows an interest in Chinese technology, but he's also done that before, and with more impressive results. Despite its intentions, the only thing even worth speaking about here is Ms. Argento, fruit of Italian horror maestro Dario Argento's loins.

Sandra (Argento) spends the first push of this dismal film talking background with Miles (Madsen). and even in these stagy environs, Argento's unkempt sleaze permeates the entire scene. Miles speaks about his new wife and kids but can't help but fall for Sandra, with her hand placed playfully between her thighs, asking him to say the word "slave" over and over. Later, she talks about how an encounter with her ex-flame put her off of Lebanese cuisine, not long before she strips down to black panties and strangles Miles with his belt while giving him a handjob. Then she shoots him full of bullets.

Things get absolutely silly after this, but basically everyone wants Sandra dead, including her current flame Lester (Carl Ng) and his wife Sue (Kelly Lin). There's also some blonde crime boss, played by Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon, who leads a gang of Asian hoods but later makes plans for Sandra to hide out in Shanghai. But as the convolutions become more earnest, Argento is given nothing to do but run around and brandish a gun every once in awhile (to look dangerous, I suppose). If anything, it's the other way around: Argento makes the gun look dangerous.

Boarding Gate is a big, hot mess of a movie without a clue of what's going on in its echo-chamber of a head. The action is loose and unformulated, the thrills lack tension, and its final stab at circular narrative is an act of buffoonery. Assayas, far from the strange machinations of Clean and demonlover, directs the first half with an even hand but loses all intelligibility once Miles' blood spreads out on the hardwood floor; what might have been an acceptable battle of wits becomes a fussy piece of techno-thrill.

Fortunately, there's always Argento to be entranced by, and even when she's sipping, or rather chugging, a glass of expensive whiskey, she holds the film under her thumb. The first of four films in which she will appear this year, Boarding Gate is without question the most profoundly ridiculous, although papa Argento's upcoming The Mother of Tears isn't out of the running. Much more fascinating is her show-stopping dog-make-out scene in Abel Ferrara's Go Go Tales and her revelatory performance as the titular seductress in Catherine Breillat's exceptional The Last Mistress. In Assayas' hands, however, she is lost: Her carnivorous stare matched only by hollow eyes, her unwavering eroticism given nothing to truly conquer, her intoxicating profanity restrained when it begs for release.

Sorry ma'am, you can't board the plane like that.



Boarding Gate

Facts and Figures

Run time: 106 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 22nd August 2007

Distributed by: Magnolia Pictures

Production compaines: Canal Plus, Margo Films, TPS Star

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 30%
Fresh: 13 Rotten: 31

IMDB: 5.1 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Francois Margolin

Starring: as Sandra, as Miles Rennberg, as Sue Wang, as Kay, Carl Ng as Lester Wang

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

An unusually realistic teen movie, this drama gets deep under the skin of its characters,...

Bleed for This Movie Review

Bleed for This Movie Review

This is such a ripping true story that it can't help but grab hold of...

Moana Movie Review

Moana Movie Review

In a clear echo of Frozen, this Disney animated adventure centres on a fiercely independent...

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

The 2003 comedy Bad Santa is a holiday classic that skilfully mixes gross-out humour with...

Allied Movie Review

Allied Movie Review

There's a terrific script at the heart of this World War II thriller, with a...

A United Kingdom Movie Review

A United Kingdom Movie Review

Based on a powerful true story from the late 1940s, this drama is packed with...

Indignation Movie Review

Indignation Movie Review

Philip Roth's layered novels are a challenge for filmmakers (see also 2003's The Human Stain...

Advertisement
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

It's been five years since the last Harry Potter movie, and J.K. Rowling has been...

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Yet another bonkers thriller starring Nicolas Cage, this trashy crime comedy comes from director Paul...

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

"Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall" is a DVD...

Arrival Movie Review

Arrival Movie Review

This sci-fi drama has an enjoyably brain-bending plot that leaves the audience almost stunned with...

Elle Movie Review

Elle Movie Review

There's a boldly comical tone to this outrageous thriller that can't help but unnerve audiences...

100 Streets Movie Review

100 Streets Movie Review

A multi-strand drama set in London, this film is very nicely shot and acted, but...

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

It's been seven years since designer Tom Ford made a splash with his award-winning writing-directing...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.