AFTER LOVE ★★★½☆
D: Joachim Lafosse (Our Children).
S: Bérénice Bejo, Cédric Kahn, Marthe Keller.
Too one-sided to be up there with A SEPARATION and 5X2, but the minutiae of a divorce is excruciatingly believable.
D: Cristian Mungiu (Beyond the Hills; 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days)
S: Adrian Titieni, Maria-Victoria Dragus, Rares Andrici, Vlad Ivanov, Malina Manovici.
A once idealistic man unravels. Dense. Morally layered. Up there with BARKING DOGS NEVER BITE and LEVIATHAN.
THE HANDMAIDEN ★★★★☆
D: Park Chan-wook (Stoker; Thirst; I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK; Lady Vengeance; Oldboy; Sympathy for Mr Vengeance; JSA: Joint Security Area).
S: Kim Min-hee, Kim Tae-ri, Ha Jung-woo, Cho Jin-woong, Moon So-ri.
Builds on STOKER's mix of eroticism and danger. Continues Park's themes of vengeance and emancipation.