The Childhood of a Leader (2016)

Brady Corbet directs Bérénice Bejo, Liam Cunningham and Stacy Martin in this arthouse drama following a battle of wills between a spoilt politician’s son and his uncaring parents during the aftermath of WWI.

The opening montage of the Edwardian age falling apart is a sucker punch. Scott Walker’s score is so threatening that it damn near overpowers the classy, staid visuals. This is very slow burn, obtuse stuff. You have to be patient as the shocks do come and have a powerful effect. Whether the trick would work on a second viewing I have my doubts. It essentially boils down to dislikable people behaving coldly to each other and then worse to each other. Both Robert Pattison and Bérénice Bejo do memorable turns.


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