This review has been ‘repurposed’ from my other site, theOneliner.com
In retrospect, I’ve read some recaps of Notre Jour Viendra, or Our Day Will Come for those deprived of the French language, that almost make sense of the piece. I thought about unleashing the powers of Control-C and Control-V to make my life easier, but I think I’d be doing everyone a dis-service. You see, after something like the ten minute mark I utterly lost track of damn near everything in this film, and I’m reasonably sure that’s not through lack of attention on my part.
Let’s start with what we do know. Remy (Oliver Barthelemy) is an awkward teenager, happiest when on the internet playing World of Warcraft. Patrick (Vincent Cassel) plays a pyschotherapist who for reasons untouched upon is more of the psycho than the therapist. The two meet one night after Remy recieves a message from his on-line WoW ‘girlfriend’ saying she’s about to harm herself, and Remy runs off in search of her. By chance, Patrick bumps into him and agrees to help for what I presume is narrative convienience rather than professional concern after hearing of Remy’s plight, as he hardly seems the caring type.
The first crisis point comes on finding Remy’s perfectly unharmed ‘girlfriend’, meeting for the first time in real life, and finding she’s a little more manly than Remy had expected. In that it’s a man. A weird looking man, to be sure, but a man. From here on in, attempting to describe the actions or assign believable motivations to anything that occurs is a fool’s errand, as the two start down a path of nihilistic violence and self-destruction that makes a mockery of credibility.
Around about the time that, in a bid (I’m guessing) to cheer Remy up, Patrick starts a fight with a group of Arabs I completely lost touch with any of the character’s reasons for doing anything. Hell, I didn’t even recognise that they’re bonding over both being, in their opinion, marginalised redheads until over halfway through the film when Remy starts waffling about going to Ireland, apparently the spiritual home of the Redhead Nation. It’s not like they’re being picked on or shunned because they have red hair. They’re being treated as weird sociopaths because of their innate weird sociopath-icity.
Our Day Will Come plays something like This Is England, but with redheads rather than skinheads. Or perhaps a Gallic Way of the Gun. Or Fear and Lothing In Las Vegas. Or all of the above. Or none of them.
I suppose it’s to its credit that I’ve really got no idea what to compare this film against, but unfortunately it’s more because I have no explanation at all regarding how the characters we’re introduced to at the start of the film end up doing the things they’re doing at the end of the film, at least without invoking mind-altering drugs, either for the protagonists or the audience.
If you watched the first fifteen minutes of the film, and then the last fifteen minutes of the film, there’s no concievable way anyone could come close to sensibly and coherently filling in the intervening story. Trouble is, it doesn’t look like the scriptwriters of this film could either.
There’s a certain amount of enjoyment to be had watching Vincent Cassel run around gurning and frothing at the mouth, and somewhat less enjoyment to be had watching Oliver Barthelemy do the same, but what the point of any of it is completely eludes me. It very quickly reduces to reprehensible characters swanning around doing reprehensible things, and while it’s all well and good to go around talking about pushing the boundaries of cinema and engaging with taboos, when it happens at the expense of having the plot and characters make any sense whatsoever it’s a challenge too far for the writers, and more importantly, the audience.
This is getting dangerously close to Gaspar Noe territory, and while this doesn’t plumb quite the same depths of pointless, exploitatative drivel as Noe’s output, it’s taking up residence in the same delapidated postcode area. There’s probably a very slender fraction of the population that will love this film, just as there’s the slender fraction who idolise Noe’s, but the rest of us can happily live without this flim in our lives.