peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2023 02 10 Exotica

Exotica (1994)

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A bit of misguided Atom Egoyan completism; he wrote, directed and cast his wife Arsinée Khanjian as the madam of a strip joint in Toronto. The erotic thriller framing is supposed to give heft to other sliced-up stories of loss and grief, of overlapping entangled lives, of contraband wildlife. Again it's very 1990s: the large CD-holder furniture, the Volvo 240 station wagon of dreams (Egoyan's own?), Leonard Cohen on soundtrack alongside some intriguing Eastern music. Perhaps the set is the most interesting thing. Bruce Greenwood leads. Again Sarah Polley as some kind of wide-eyed wise ingenue. Elias Koteas. More miss than hit for me.

Roger Ebert: four stars at the time and another four stars in 2009 as a "great movie". Caryn James at the New York Times.