2020 Aubagne International Film Festival, 2019 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, 2019 Fantastic Fest Austin, 2019 AFI FEST Los Angeles, 2019 Haifa International Film Festival
2019 Austin Fantastic Fest - Best Director
2019 Austin Fantastic Fest - Meilleur film
2020 Aubagne International Film Festival - Best Actors Performance
2020 Aubagne International Film Festival - Best Original Score
2019 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival - Best Director
Festival international du film de Aubagne - Meilleur performance d'acteurs
Tim Mielants, Benjamin Sprengers
Pierre Bokma, Katelijne Damen, Hannah Hoekstra, Kevin Janssens
Beta Cinema GmbH
In a quiet, picturesque Belgian nudist camp, taciturn 38-year-old Patrick (Kevin Janssens, transformed from his turn in fellow Fantasia selection SAVAGE STATE) is content to perform odd repair jobs while his father Rudy runs the place. But when Rudy dies suddenly, Patrick’s whole existence is upturned, the unwanted surge in emotion making every little problem a monolith. Opportunistic speculators seek to acquire the camp from under him. Money goes missing from the till. A feud erupts involving singer-songwriter interloper Dustin Apollo (Jemaine Clement, FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS). And most disastrously of all, Patrick’s favourite hammer has gone missing. Taunted by the gap in his tool rack, Patrick begins a painstaking search for his missing hammer – but what he’ll find is something more profound.
Making his feature debut after a TV career spanning the likes of PEAKY BLINDERS, THE TERROR, and LEGION, director Tim Mielants paints a down-to-earth portrait of a man struggling to deal with his feelings – and of a micro-society struggling to deal with him. A brooding, reserved Janssens leads a mostly nude cast in a film whose drama is every bit as understated and observational as its comedy. Shorn of costumes, the ensemble creates a complex spiderweb of identifiable characters and relationships that underpins Janssens’ essay of repressed grief and resistance to responsibility. Patrick’s personal detective story is told with almost children’s-book simplicity, the camera endowing his relatively inconsequential lost-hammer conundrum with emotional stakes as high as they come. Appropriately for a film containing this much full frontal nudity, PATRICK examines the human condition through a lens as beautiful, comical, and weird as the human body itself. That it contains the best naked fight scene since EASTERN PROMISES is just a bonus. – Andrew Todd
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