Director: Baptiste Drapeau
Writer: Ollivier Briand (Screenplay) Baptiste Drapeau, Mauricio Carrasco (Collaboration)
Starring: Alice Isaaz, Jacqueline Bisset, Francois-Dominique Blin, Bastien Ughetto, Anne Steffrens, Judith Margolin
Plot: 20 years after her husband’s death, a woman keeps more than just his memory alive. Needing help at home, she takes in a student, but soon detects a risk of losing her husband to the girl. Does the girl have even a ghost of a chance?
Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: The Lodger starts when widowed woman Elizabeth Dardelin (Bisset) takes in a student Julie Moreau (Isaaz) to help around the home. Elizabeth has been keeping the memory of her husband Victor (Blin) alive for years, in an unnatural way, which will see her having his cloths dressed up around the home.
As Julie looks to meet more people, she learns more about the strange relationship Elizabeth has created with her dead husband, which will create a tension within the home.
Thoughts on The Lodger
Characters & Performances – Julie is the student that has come to rent the room from Elizabeth, she is young and in the big city for the first time, looking to enjoy the student experience, only to find herself drawn to the ghostly figure that Elizabeth keeps around the home. She starts to get closer to the ghost, finding it to have the best contact she is getting off another human, but at a price. Alice Isaaz shows us the young and innocent figure thrown into this world perfectly. Elizabeth is the widowed woman that has believed her husband has remained around the house since his death, putting her into a strange relationship with him, finding herself starting to lose the contact she once had with him, when a new younger woman comes into the home. Jacqueline Bisset is great in the role of the obsessed widow that believes her husband is around her and cheating on her, filled with insecurity, while trying to bring confidence back to her character.
Story – The story here follows a widowed woman that starts to believe her new lodger is having an affair with her late husband’s ghost, causing her to need to take drastic steps to stop this. This is a story that does feel unsettling, with the idea that the ghost could still be around in the home, does make for an interesting look at how this could all be happening, the innocence that Julie shows, comes form seeing how she could fall into the idea the ghost is real, while the obsessive nature of Elizabeth brings out a new way of looking at grief. The mix of these factors will lead to the unsettling nature of the film that always has an edge about each and every scene.
Themes – The Lodger is a horror thriller that will show the uncomfortable world created by Elizabeth and the belief that her husband is still around. The home that Elizabeth has lived in for years, does work as a wonderful location use, knowing she will always have a story about what happened in the home.
Final Thoughts – The Lodger is an unsettling horror, that will use the uncomfortable environment to move the story forward.