Trying to escape the grief of a recently dead father, Charlie discovers Maggie – a mysterious woman of esoteric profession.
A film about a 16-year-old male falling in love with an S & M mistress could have been merely salacious and tawdry but director Stephen Lance has fashioned a complex and quite subtle tale that might be summarised by an inversion of a Dylan line: “Your debutante knows what you want, but I know what you need.”
With a cast that includes Rachael Blake, no one puts a foot wrong. The choice of French actress Emmanuelle Béart as the dominatrix is inspired; watching her in any film is an ideal way to overdose on oestrogen – a highly addictive substance.
This is an intelligent film for adults (the kind Rachel Ward has been criticised for) and the best Australian film seen for a while. (MMu)
BY MICHAEL MUIR