Film (1983; vt The Last Battle). Films du Loup. Directed by Luc Besson. Written by Besson, Jolivet. Cast includes Jean Bouise, Pierre Jolivet and Jean Reno. 92 minutes. Black and white.
Made by Besson (later one of the best-known French directors of his generation) when only 23, the arty but vigorous Le Dernier Combat is low-budget and photographed in black-and-white Cinemascope, and has no dialogue at all. A young man (Jolivet) in an unspeaking Ruined-Earth world – both the underlying Holocaust and the resulting speechlessness remain unexplained – flies in a restored plane, meets an old doctor, matures, fights a swordsman, conquers a tribal leader and gets a girl. A dwarf lives in a locked car trunk; the tops of high-rise buildings project from the sand; fish fall from the sky; Samurai lurch and scuttle; women are imprisoned. [PN]
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