Carlos

Film

Thrillers

Carlos.jpg

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>5</span>/5
Rate this
 

Time Out says

Tue Oct 19 2010

Continuing a pattern of switching between subdued ensemble dramas (‘Summer Hours’, ‘Late August, Early September’) and balls-out ‘global’ techno-thrillers (‘Demonlover’, ‘Boarding Gate’), French director Olivier Assayas returns with a hulking, seething, intermittently sublime, five-and-a-half hour film in which he manages to draw together elements from both of these distinct styles.

‘Carlos’ is the lightly fictionalised biopic of Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, known to the world – but not in this film! – as Carlos the Jackal, and it comes across as the mother of all New Yorker profiles writ loud and large on the screen. Central to the film is a passionate, technically complex (he’s fluent in half a dozen languages) performance from Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramirez who feels like the perfect, paunchy mouthpiece for Carlos’s fervent, if flawed, gunboat Marxism.

Covering the period between his joining the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) in 1970 and his capture in Sudan in 1994 (as he was being treated for a varicose vein on one of his testicles), the film works best when it presents information visually rather than with swathes of ideological discourse. The highlight is a masterly rendering of Carlos’s raid on an OPEC meeting in Vienna in 1975 for which Assayas orchestrates detail in such a way that it speaks about the politics, fears, tactics and ambitions of all involved. Elsewhere, small episodes – such as the gun-toting capture of Baader-Meinhof wildcat Gabriele Kröcher-Tiedemann – feel like they’ve been included purely for the sake of thoroughness.

Assayas doesn’t try to reflect too audaciously on Carlos ‘the man’, though he does paint him as someone whose single-minded focus on political goals was partly fuelled by raging sexual desire. (NB: The film is also screening in a more compact 158-minute version.)
0

Reviews

Add +

Release details

UK release:

Fri Oct 22, 2010

Duration:

319 mins

Users say

0
<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|6
1 person listening
Technoguy

This was a surprisingly excellent film with a humdinger soundtrack.Whether you get the theatrical or TV version it has been thoroughly researched and Ramirez is a match-fit Venezuelan who superbly captures the heady,multi-linguistic,talents necessary for the role. The OPEC episode is the centre piece and the killing of the French police,which later gets him arrested and tried and imprisoned for life.His hedonism and womanising are emphasised and his desire for fame which loses him support from the Arabs.Brilliant.

Technoguy

This was a surprisingly excellent film with a humdinger soundtrack.Whether you get the theatrical or TV version it has been thoroughly researched and Ramirez is a match-fit Venezuelan who superbly captures the heady,multi-linguistic,talents necessary for the role. The OPEC episode is the centre piece and the killing of the French police,which later gets him arrested and tried and imprisoned for life.His hedonism and womanising are emphasised and his desire for fame which loses him support from the Arabs.Brilliant.

goinfo

Come on - this film is massive, exhilarating, fast, brilliantly staged. And has a very cool, incongruent soundtrack.

goinfo

Come on - this film is massive, exhilarating, fast, brilliantly staged. And has a very cool, incongruent soundtrack.