Movie Review: The Acrobat

Sébastien Ricard and Yury Paulau in The Acrobat

Jump to the good stuff: The Story | Some Thoughts | The Final Verdict

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

The Story:

The Acrobat is about two men who meet at a vacant apartment and become sexually entangled with each other.

Micha (Yury Paulau) is an injured acrobat who sleeps in an unfinished apartment in a Montreal high rise because he’s homeless. One day, Christophe (Sébastien Ricard) looks at the apartment with an interest to buy it. The real estate agent leaves, allowing Christophe to wander the premises alone. He runs into Micha on the terrace, and they have sex.

Early one morning, while Micha is still sleeping in the vacant apartment, movers come in with a mattress, followed by Christophe, who is surprised to see Micha. They talk, then have sex.

Without being invited, Micha continues to visit Christophe, and they carry on with their sexual tristes, never revealing their names. They also keep their personal lives separate, using their intimate moments to deal with their inner turmoil.

Some Thoughts:

The Acrobat isn’t as engrossing as it should be. We never get to know the characters enough to make their situation plausible. Christophe’s mother is in a nursing home, which upsets him, but it doesn’t resonate because we have no sense of their relationship past mother and son. There’s a hint of conflict, but we never know what it is.

Micha is a professional aerial acrobat who was injured during practice. He feels the accident was planned as a way to give a younger acrobat his job, but we never know if this is the truth or if it’s in his head. Micha has no place to live, but it’s not clear why. We know he hasn’t been paid since the fall–something about insurance, it’s not really clear–but we have no idea where he was living prior to the accident. Was he always homeless?

Although the story plays out with drama, then sex, then drama, it never feels repetitive or dull. The sex acts go from mildly rough to fairly sadomasochistic. If S/M isn’t your thing, you might want to stay away from this film.

The Final Verdict:

The Acrobat is an artsy film that explores intimacy and sexual expression. Although it is interesting, the lack of character development keeps it from being engrossing.

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