DVD Review - All Yours (Je suis à toi)

This is the second feature from David Lambert. His first feature was Beyond the Walls (Hors les murs), an unexpected, romantic prison drama, and it was excellent. With this movie, it's less about an idealized affair between two men. I suppose it's a roundabout love story, but its protagonist is less a lover and more a user. It keeps a crucial piece of information of the protagonist from the audience as a pivot point, which ultimately hurts with empathizing with that character.

Nahuel Pérez Biscayart stars as Lucas, a young man from Argentina. Like Rodrigo Guerrero's The Third One (El Tercero), Lambert's movie opens on a full-screen of a computer as Lucas is making web cam videos. Lucas' videos are pornographic. Apparently, he has a following and inexplicably he asks his Internet followers for money under the presumed threat of suicide. He says to give him a ticket and he'll go. The movie then smash-cuts to Lucas at an airport in Belgium.

Jean-Michel Balthazar co-stars as Henry, an overweight, Belgian cook who works in a small-town bakery. He's gay and he picks up Lucas at the airport, providing him with a place to stay and hoping to have sex with Lucas. Henry is not only overweight but he's significantly older, probably in his early 40's if not middle-age. However, it becomes apparent that Lucas is disgusted by Henry and doesn't want to have sex with him at all.

Eventually, Henry sees that Lucas isn't happy or is reciprocal of feelings, so Henry offers to send him back to Argentina. At the beginning, Lucas said incredulously that he has no family or friends. He tells Henry that he abandoned everything to come to Belgium. His desperation would seem to indicate this to be true, but Lucas reveals himself to be a hustler, a guy who'll do anything for money, whether it's porn or having sex with men, despite claiming to be straight, so it's difficult to believe anything he says.

Monia Chokri (Heartbeats and Laurence Anyways) plays Audrey, an employee at the same bakery where Henry works. Lucas falls in love with her, probably because she's the first female that he sees, but it's not clear what she sees in him. She knows that Lucas is living with Henry and that they're sleeping together. She knows that Henry is gay, so when Lucas starts showing interest in her, she should be skeptical, hesitant or have more regard for Henry. She does have sex with Lucas, even after hearing Henry say in a room full of people that Lucas is his boyfriend.

A secret is then revealed about Lucas that's supposed to make him the most sympathetic character ever. Yet, the screenplay doesn't provide enough of his back story that allows us to understand what his life in Argentina was like. It disconnects us from his initial motivations, so I don't get what Lucas' plan was or what his end game was for coming to Belgium.

Lambert dwells on the bakery procedures and what goes into making various breads and pastries. He also has too many instances of depicting gay sex as a thing that is repulsive. Almost every time that Lucas has sex with a man, regardless if he's a fat man like Henry or a younger better-looking man, Lucas is always shown in the shower desperately trying to wash himself clean. Given that the character is straight, I guess this is fine, but where it leaves Henry is ultimately pathetic.

The final shot of Henry is him dancing with a man who is more age-appropriate and more than likely is actually gay. Yet, the screenplay again is so lacking that I couldn't tell you that man's name or confirm if he even has any kind of romantic interest in Henry at all.

There's a few comparisons to be made to Lambert's debut. There's a connection between two characters who are of two different ethnicities or of two different countries. However, this film is not as much of a knockout as his previous film.

Three Stars out of Five.
Not Rated but contains male full-frontal nudity.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 43 mins.


Popular Posts