Follow me, I’m fleeing you / Flee me, I’m following you: a captivating diptych [critique]

A love drama treated as a thriller with twists and Lynchian atmospheres. A subtle deconstruction of the myth of the femme fatale.

At the start, there is a manga by Mochiru Hishisato which Kôji Fukada seized first in series then in the form of this diptych. The opportunity for a filmmaker who likes to vary genres (the adolescent chronicle with goodbye summerpost-apocalyptic fiction with Sayonarathe social thriller with The Nurse…) to try his hand at love fresco. The story of the employee of a fireworks company whose heart, which swings limply between two office colleagues, suddenly catches fire for a young woman rich in secrets met by chance. The title of the two films perfectly sums up the framework of the plot – the object of his passion will continue to mysteriously disappear when he tries to approach it and then to tumble back into his life when he has decided to leave it. forget – but not the way Fukada brings her to life on screen. In a register of thriller where hovers a supernatural atmosphere in Lynch (in particular in the appearance and the abrupt disappearance of the secondary characters). And in the way of seizing the myth of the femme fatale to deconstruct it by showing how in a macho society, it is the simple fact that a young woman aspires to be free and therefore elusive which makes her so fascinating. The filmmaker here revisits the codes of romantic comedy with a playful tone that is unprecedented in his work. There are certainly air pockets during the 4 hours of the story, but nothing that jeopardizes the essential: the fascination exerted by these characters and the inability to anticipate what they are going to do in the second that follows.

By Koji Fukada. With Win Morisaki, Kaho Tsuchimura, Shosei Uno… Duration: 1h49 and 2h04. Released May 11 and 18, 2022

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