Shame (2011)


Brandon (Michael Fassbender) is an attractive man in his thirties who is unable to control his sexual urges. Compulsively addicted to sex, Brandon satisfies his needs by visiting numerous pornographic sites, masturbating or engaging in sexual relations with unknown women, including those who practice the oldest craft. His social life is reduced to occasional outings, with his boss David (James Badge Dale) and colleagues from work, where he flirts with alcohol with lonely ladies, who are impressed by men’s attention.

When his younger sister Sisi (Carey Mulligan) moves into his luxuriously furnished apartment unannounced, the young man becomes aware that his life routine is in jeopardy. Brandon is gradually sinking into frustration, burdened by the broken relationship between the ‘brother-sister’ relationship, which has its roots in their traumatic past.

Talented British director Steve McQueen (Oscar winner for 12 Years a Slave) is signing a modern drama that discusses provocative themes. For an intriguing, at times disturbing scenario, which leaves no one indifferent, the credit equally belongs to two people: Steve McQueen and Abby Morgan. Putting the controversial character in the focus of the story, the director, through a precisely defined concept, talks about sexual alienation in an urban environment, where so much is at hand. Human needs are practically instinctively met, because the fast pace of life dictates the conditions and simply does not leave us time for something more, something more serious (which requires more time, a slower pace of life).

Yes, yes, there is no more romance, modern civilization no longer recognizes something like that. The life philosophy of the protagonist of this drama is roughly built on this. Aware of the reality in which he lives, Brandon is dissatisfied (in one scene he clearly emphasizes that he would most like to live in the 1960s), but he wants to adapt and try to get as much out of life as possible (developing an efficient system for settling his own lust). The restlessness in the soul of the main actor is finely painted. The slower rhythm of most of the plot, with a few effectively captured shots (in which Brandon is in focus), gives a special artistic quality to the film.

A small but well-chosen ensemble of actors played scores at a high level. Michael Fassbender brilliantly portrayed the main character (pleasant appearance skillfully hides his dark intentions), and he didn’t even hesitate to take off in front of the camera lens. Of course, to the general approval of the female part of the audience, although many claim that there was work for the backup. Carrie Mulligan did a great job in the supporting role, so she convinced us once again that such roles are receptive to her acting sensibility.

A small objection refers to the insufficiently presented past of the brother and sister, so this way everything remains in a hint, shrouded in a veil of mystery. Maybe a couple of flashbacks would eliminate this shortcoming, but it seems that the director deliberately neglected this detail, emphasizing the current status of the main character.

The fact that this film read caused a lot of controversy, so it is not to the taste of all fans of the genre. OK, I liked it, because the film has all the hallmarks of a well-thought-out drama that leads to deep thinking. Admirers of an intriguingly defined narrative, a bit of unconventional drama, can certainly watch this, and I’m not really sure about the others.