Synopsis by Jason Ankeny
The action in Canadian provocateur Atom Egoyan's cryptic Exotica revolves largely around the strip club, which lends the film its name, a faux-tropical hothouse where young female dancers cater to their customers' sexual and psychological needs. Among the regulars is Francis (Bruce Greenwood), a troubled taxman haunted by Christina, a young stripper played by Mia Kirshner. As the film hypnotically unfolds, their relationship is slowly explored, the narrative dovetailing with the stories of a gay pet shop owner (Don McKellar), the Exotica's pregnant owner (Arsinee Khanjian), and its embittered DJ (Elias Koteas). Like all of Egoyan's films, Exotica is a riddle, its answers only fostering more questions. The director's recurring themes of family breakdowns, voyeurism and obsession are all in the mix here as well, but essayed with a new clarity of vision and intensity.
grief, nightclub, stripper, audit, tax-inspector
High Artistic Quality, High Historical Importance, Sleeper