Synopsis by Josh Ralske
Claire Denis' elliptical drama L'Intrus was inspired by a short book written by philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy about his heart transplant. In the film, Michel Subor (Le Petit Soldat) stars as Louis, who lives fairly self-sufficiently in a small cabin in the snowy wilds near the Swiss border. Louis has a son (Grégoire Colin, who also starred with Subor in the director's Beau Travail) whose wife (Florence Loiret-Caille) is a border guard, and they have two young children, but Louis has a strained relationship with his family. He lives a hard, stoic life out in the cold. Mysterious strangers cross the border at all hours of the day and night, and Louis vigilantly -- sometimes violently -- protects his homestead. It soon comes to pass that he needs a heart transplant. Louis quickly and quietly makes some arrangements, and travels to Pusan for the operation. He makes the demand that he be given a young man's heart, and not a woman's. His health still failing, Louis then travels to Tahiti, hoping for a final reunion with another son, whom he abandoned years before. The footage of the young Subor in Tahiti was taken from an uncompleted adaptation of a Robert Louis Stevenson story directed by Paul Gégauff. L'Intrus also stars Béatrice Dalle, Katia Golubeva, and Alex Descas in smaller roles. The film was shown by the Film Society of Lincoln Center as part of 2005's Rendez-Vous With French Cinema.
black-market, border [geographic], cabin, family-neglect, family-strife, heart-transplant, reconciliation, son, woods [place]