Title: Disorder

Director: Alice Winocour

Starring: Matthias Schoenaerts, Diane Kruger, Paul Hamy, Zaïd Errougui-Demonsant, Percy Kemp, Victor Pontecorvo.

The topic of PTSD has gradually weaved into the cinematic medium in recent years. The difficult return to normal life, after having seen death and the horrors of combat, is what sets in motion Alice Wincour’s ‘Disorder.’

Vincent (Matthias Schoenaerts), a French Special Forces soldier just back from Afghanistan, is suffering from a post-traumatic stress disorder. He is hired to ensure the security of Jessie (Diane Kruger), the trophy-wife of a rich Lebanese businessman, and her son Ali (Zaïd Errougui-Demonsant), at their luxurious villa. As he starts experiencing a strange fascination for the woman he has to protect, Vincent increasingly seems to fall into paranoia, until the actual thriller begins.

The French cineaste, just like in her first feature ‘Augustine,’ explores the protagonist’s physical malfunction. The movie is built around Vincent’s phenomenology, his physical perception of what goes on around him and the consequent altered vision of reality. The audience experiences the entire drama through Vincent’s senses, as he becomes attached to Jessie and Ali.

Matthias Schoenaerts, once more, proves his eclecticism by representing with great dignity and reservedness the wounded soul of an ex-soldier. The chemistry between him and Diane Kruger works wonders: their complicity coyly builds up, as we listen to them converse in French.

The psychological thriller is based on ambiguities, related to Vincent’s paranoia, and all of this collapses with the manifestation of an actual threat. However, one of the elements that keeps audiences spellbound is the charisma of the house. Despite ‘Disorder’ can not be classified as a horror movie, the mansion where Jessie lives becomes a character of its own, just as in many films pertaining to that genre.

In fact, the original title of the film “Maryland” is the name of the abode, that is stage to the home-invasion. Disorder’s house mirror’s the polysemy of Vincent’s state of mind. It has a fascinating duality. An eerie-magnetic charm. It serves as a prison and a shelter, the place of incommunicability and the setting where revelations occur, a luxurious haven for lavish parties and the disrupted final destination for war zone.

Technical: B-

Acting: B

Story: C-

Overall: C+

Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

Disorder Movie Review

By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi, is a film critic, culture and foreign affairs reporter, screenwriter, film-maker and visual artist. She studied in a British school in Milan, graduated in Political Sciences, got her Masters in screenwriting and film production and studied at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York and Los Angeles. Chiara’s “Material Puns” use wordplay to weld the title of the painting with the materials placed on canvas, through an ironic reinterpretation of Pop-Art, Dadaism and Ready Made. She exhibited her artwork in Milan, Rome, Venice, London, Oxford, Paris and Manhattan. Chiara works as a reporter for online, print, radio and television and also as a film festival PR/publicist. As a bi-lingual journalist (English and Italian), who is also fluent in French and Spanish, she is a member of the Foreign Press Association in New York, the Women Film Critics Circle in New York, the Italian Association of Journalists in Milan and the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean. Chiara is also a Professor of Phenomenology of Contemporary Arts at IED University in Milan.

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