At this point it looks like Steve McQueen's Shame is the film I'll be seeing and Albert Nobbs will be the odd "man" out as scheduling conflicts at the Toronto Film Festival are making it hard for me to decide on what I will and won't be seeing. I wish the festival folks would be smart enough not to set a screening of Nobbs against The Descendants and then not set the second screening of Nobbs against the only screening of Shame, but hey, that's just me, a logical thinker.
Nevertheless, Shame it will be, and the glowing reviews out of Venice and Telluride have me highly anticipating McQueen's follow-up to Hunger, which stars Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan in a film David Gritten says "would [presumably] receive an NC-17 rating" as "Fassbender has several scenes involving full-frontal nudity and Mulligan has one of her own." However, when the subject nature centers on a sex addict and we're talking about a realist filmmaker in McQueen, what can you really expect?
Justin Chang at Variety calls it "[a] mesmerizing companion piece to his 2008 debut, Hunger." He adds, "[This] more approachable but equally uncompromising drama likewise fixes its gaze on the uses and abuses of the human body, as Michael Fassbender again strips himself down, in every way an actor can, for McQueen's rigorous but humane interrogation."
Xan Brooks at the Guardian says Fassbender and Mulligan "give dynamite performances." He gives the film glowing marks adding, "This is fluid, rigorous, serious cinema; the best kind of adult movie. There are glimmers of American Gigolo to its pristine sheen and echoes of Midnight Cowboy to the scratchy, mutual dependence of the damaged duo at the core."
I'll end the kudos with Todd McCarthy at The Hollywood Reporter saying, "Driven by a brilliant, ferocious performance by Michael Fassbender, Shame is a real walk on the wild side, a scorching look at a case of sexual addiction that's as all-encompassing as a craving for drugs."
With that, I have the first clip from the film to share with you along with several new images courtesy of CineZapping (via Shadow and Act). I've included a few of the images in the slideshow above, but you can view the full gallery of 28 images right here.
Shame does not yet have a distributor and the reportedly NC-17 cut of the film may scare people away, but if the reviews continue like this someone will have to take a risk with it... Weinstein?
Brandon (Fassbender) is a 30-something man living in New York who is unable to manage his sex life. After his wayward younger sister (Mulligan) moves into his apartment, Brandon's world spirals out of control. From director Steve McQueen (Hunger), Shame is a compelling and timely examination of the nature of need, how we live our lives and the experiences that shape us.