- Director: Carlos Sanchez; Jason Sanchez
- Writer: Carlos Sanchez; Jason Sanchez
- Producer: Luc Déry; Élaine Hébert
Photographer brothers turn their collective hands to filmmaking...oops!
The acting is fine. The cinematography is fine. The narrative...well, that's all over the place.
Evan Rachel Wood wrestles with the material to give her predatory, sociopathic character some credibility...yeah, flying off-the-handle here, there and everywhere doesn't exactly tip the scales in her favour.
The idea that damaged people end up damaging others is a meaty and complex subject...akin to the bullied becoming the bullies...for it to - truly - work, you need to invoke some kind of empathy for the audience to cling on to...otherwise, the character is viewed with an uncomplicated disdain.
Skillful writing is what Allure needed...there needed to be a playfulness...a screwed-up character with a screwed-up mind is easy to write, a predatory bisexual/lesbian isn't going to win hearts and minds easily...ever seen a cat play with a mouse? It's cruel, it's [weirdly] entertaining, it's playful and it always end in tragedy [for the mouse].
Allure needed to play more...from the opening scene, cruelty was the starter on the menu...with tragedy - obviously - being the dessert. Sadly, the main course lacked the prime cut steak it needed!
An unusual and compelling mix of character drama and psychological thriller, Allure questions dynamics of age and maturity, dominance and submission, codependence and freedom.
Thirty-something Laura lives in the shadow of a past that she just can’t shake. She works a day job cleaning houses for her father’s business, and her off-duty attempts at intimacy put her into unsatisfying, unsettling situations. Until, that is, she meets teenage Eva whose individuality is suppressed by her controlling mother. Both isolated in their normal worlds, Laura offers Eva an escape, and the two forge a precarious and increasingly volatile space of their own.
Allure marks the confident feature debut of fine art photographers Carlos and Jason Sanchez, who bring their collective aesthetic sensibility to the film’s visual style by using camera placement and lighting to make internal states visible. Two powerful performances, in turns forceful and vulnerable, anchor this tense story of manipulation and how the past can haunt us.