On Tour (15)

Starring: Mathieu Amalric
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The Independent Culture

Mathieu Amalric's drama of backstage life among a travelling troupe of burlesque performers has a loose, improvisatory feel that is warmly convincing.

Amalric himself plays Joachim, impresario and father-figure to his raucous group of Anglo-American ladies, his twitchiness about their future together obscured in a back-story that suggests his poor reputation in the business. His neglect of his two young sons causes him guilt, though not enough to make him quit the rackety life of tours, trains and overnight stays at featureless hotels (there's a good running gag about his aversion to piped muzak). The stage performances are pleasantly kinky, and even inventive – how did she do that thing with the balloon? – though the story's unvoiced implication is that burlesque might have had its day as a professional concern.

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