Tiresia

Movie Review by EDF

Starring: Laurent Lucas, Clara Choveaux, Thiago Teles, Celia Catalifo, Lou Castel

Director: Bertrand Bonello

According to Greek mythology, Tiresia is both a woman and man that exist at the same time. There have been movies in the past such as ORLANDO where the character turns from a woman to a man. In modern day terms, the equivalent would be a story about a transvestite and his strange journey through life.

Terranova (Laurent Lucas) picks up Tiresia (Clara Choveaux), a transsexual prostitute and they go back to his place. He is not interested in having sex with Tiresia, his true intention is to lock her up and keep her as his prisoner. When she eventually quietens down, Terranova ties her up on a bed and sleeps beside her. The longer that Tiresia is held captive, the more she slowly turns from a woman to a man due to the lack of hormone treatments. When Tiresia asks how long she has been held captive, Terranova says he does not know. Tiresia screams her head off to show her frustration.

Tiresia believes that Terranova likes transsexuals but does not allow himself to touch them. Tiresia asks to be set free and promises not to go to the police to have him arrested but Terranova does not release her. Instead, Tiresia asks him to go see her brother and to tell him that she is now Terranova’s wife and to get her hormone treatment. Instead, Terranova stabs both of her eyes and dumps her in the middle of the countryside.

Anna (Celia Catalifo) finds Tiresia (Thiago Teles) and brings him home where she looks after him. Tiresia refuses to go to the police to report what has happened due to the fact that he is an illegal immigrant. One day, when a bunch of kids accidentally kick their ball through Anna’s window, Tiresia has a vision that one of the boy’s older brothers will be involved in a car accident. His family does not listen to Tiresia but the older brother survived the crash by sitting in the back seat of the car. Even Pere François (Laurent Lucas), the local priest goes to investigate why people have more faith in Tiresia than the church. Will he fully understand what Tiresia is going through?

It was quite clever to cast a woman and a man for the role of Tiresia but it is a little bit confusing why Laurent Lucas is playing two roles. Some people might be offended at seeing the sight of a naked transvestite or the unexpected attack on Tiresia to blind her so that she would not be able to point out who her captor was. The movie does produce a number of logical questions throughout that cover both the plot and what the backgrounds of these characters are. If you can ignore these faults, you might actually enjoy this odd movie.

2 out of 6 stars

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