London Film Festival 2012 – day nine: Simon Killer
Friday 19th October, 9pm – Ritzy
An American in Paris has long been a movie metaphor for a search for romance and the inner-self. This time it is Simon, recently graduated, and just out of a long term relationship with his High School girlfriend, who stalks the Parisian streets, searching for encounters.
Simon is at a loose end, and unable to make connections, he resorts to an escort bar where he meets a call girl, Victoria. We already have begun to suspect that Simon is not all he seems. He has a vulnerable charm, but the extent to which he exploits that to move in with Victoria comes as a shock.
Between them they concoct a frankly stupid plan to blackmail Victoria’s clients, which soon backfires in violence. Already Simon is moving on, and we realise that he is a serial parasite, and a creep of the worst sort. Run, girl, run! Not everyone falls for him, but he appeals to women by pity and manipulation, and besides, he is educated and presentable and doesn’t look dangerous.
If watching sex makes you uncomfortable in the cinema, then simply don’t see this one, it is integral to the plot as this film is an exploration of base instincts.
Brady Corbet as Simon is brooding and obsessive. He perfectly portrays the empty tears of someone with his darkness at his core.
As Simon leaves Paris to return to America, is it not clear whether he has already killed or not, but we realise that Paris has worked for him, he has made his inner transformation, and has absorbed ways to make himself even more manipulative and determinedly malevolent, and he is certainly capable of killing.
Read more reviews from the 56th London Film Festival here.
Watch the director of Simon Killer: Antonio Campos talk about the film here: