DMovies - Your platform for thought-provoking cinema

Deerskin (Le Daim)

One man's obsession with his designer jacket turns him into a serial killer, in this dirtylicious black comedy starring a smiling Jean Dujardin - on VoD on Monday, September 27th

This French black comedy was directed by Quentin Dupieux, previously made the killer tire film Rubber (201). It co-stars Jean Dujardin, best known for his lead role in The Artist (Michel Hazanavicius, 2011), and Adèle Haenel (from Celine Sciamma’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire, 2019).

Dujardin plays George, a middle-aged guy who arrives at this hotel in a mountain valley. He has recently been divorced and is having a kind of mid-life crisis. He becomes very obsessed with a deerskin jacket that he has bought for €7500 along with a digital camcorder, in what turns out to be not a very good deal. He starts making a film with the camcorder, then meets a local bartender, Denise, played by Haenel. From there, Deerskin becomes a very odd yet enjoyable movie about an impromptu serial killer. Denise becomes his producer, and they form an odd alliance.

It’s a very funny film, with a bit of Man Bites Dog (Benoît Poelvoorde, Rémy Belvaux and André Bonzel, 2012), although it’s not a found-footage mockumentary. It’s a satire of filmmaking and mid-life crises, with an anarchic sense of humour. When Deerskin goes off the walls, it happens in a very amusing fashion, especially with one murder montage. It’s also a touching film about loneliness. It is brilliantly paced, with a pair of good performances. It has a fun energy, with absurdist humour and amusing use of jolly tunes to soundtrack the mayhem that occurs later on.

Possibly the jacket is possessing Georges – but that supernatural twist is definitely open for interpretation. It presents a good character study of a man who becomes some sort of likeable monster but you almost. Dujardin is helped by very charming smile. His character here is deeply narcissistic and resorts to some unsavoury things, but his preformance makes it more palatable. It is a daring role for Dujardin to take on after The Artist, and it showcases his broad acting spectrum.

Deerskin was one of the big surprises of last year when originally released on HBO Max in the US. Sadly it fell under the radar. Now it is getting a small art-house release in the UK, and it’s definitely one of the better movies of the last couple of years: outrageous, fun, and not to be missed. It also shows how nice it would be if more films came in at 77 minutes.

Deerskin is in selected cinemas on Friday, July 16th. On VoD on Monday, September 27th.


By Ian Schultz - 13-07-2021

Ian Schultz is a film writer based in Leeds, where he runs Psychotronic Cinema. He has been writing about films for about eight years, with articles and reviews appearing in Little White Lies and Live...

DMovies Poll

Are the Oscars dirty enough for DMovies?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Most Read

Forget Friday the 13th, Paranormal Activity and the [Read More...]
Just a few years back, finding a film [Read More...]
A lot of British people would rather forget [Read More...]
Sexual diversity is at the very heart of [Read More...]
Pigs might fly. And so Brexit might happen. [Read More...]
Films quotes are very powerful not just because [Read More...]

Read More

One city, one planet, many films

 

Marina Hillquist - 23-07-2024

Marina Hillquist investigates the environmental impact of film production, and reveals how Gainesville (a city in Florida, United States) is leading the way [Read More...]

The dirtiest film characters of all time

 

Mariano Garcia - 22-07-2024

Some film characters are just so powerful that they defy time and space, and linger persistently in our memory (and in the history of cinema) - Mariano Garcia argues [Read More...]

The cinematic evolution of videogames

 

Tania Dickson - 22-07-2024

Tania Dickson looks back at the fairly young history of video games and unearths some uncanny similarities and affinities with the seventh art [Read More...]