It’s weird fruit. Lanky Pierre (Louis Garrel of ‘The Dreamers’) is summoned to his parents’ island coop, where he twitters the word ‘Mama’ obsessively, until the day his dad meets his off-screen death. Unleashed, mother (Isabelle Huppert, regally kinky) and son are soon out partying, swapping confidences and rubbing each other up the ‘wrong’ way, initially via the surrogate of ma’s toothy girlfriend Réa (Joana Preiss). Pierre finds sweeter succour in a local girl, Hansi (Emma de Caunes), and invests in her ‘ass’ all the joy he used to feel for God; but when she finds him sharing these considerations by letter to his mother, things take another turn for the perverse.
Honoré works out this libertarian trawl of discovery in a flatly observant tone, without anchoring the action in any psychological substantiality; the film feels neither real nor dreamy. More puzzling than shocking, it’s a bit of a drag.