A comparison between this and Terrence Malick's Badlands makes for an interesting contrast between American and European concepts of the cinema. Both films deal with a couple in flight, and the way in which a puzzled society becomes engrossed in their one-way journey. But there the similarities end. In Malick's film, the violence is within the central characters themselves. Tanner uses the progress of his female travellers to examine, not them but the harsh logic that underpins an 'exemplary' capitalist state like Switzerland. Thus, once Clémentine Amouroux and Catherine Retoré choose to become marginal characters - when they meet, they decide for a lark to see how long they can survive without money - they soon find that society has no place within it for them.