What’s Behind Apt 2011? A Movie Review

Alexandre Prieur-Grenier debut movie, 2011, oozes with avant-garde visuals and the lighting design is electric.

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Alexandre Prieur-Grenier may well be the next Guy Maddin or, perhaps, the next David Cronenberg. His debut in 2011 oozes with avant-garde visuals and the lighting design is electric. The best scenes are when our hero’s dreams become reality, and it looks like a heat storm at night. We’re never sure what is upside down or right side up as this director is challenging us to figure out if everything we see is part of Émile Schneider’s (the protagonist’s) imagination?

On the playbill,, this movie is described as an experimental angst thriller. The story about Schneider’s developing paranoia drives the film. He’s editing a movie, but in everything he’s seeing on a computer screen is only fueling the psychosis that’s developing in his mind. In the official plot synopsis:

Tension mounts as he has to deal with the impulsive temperament of the director who keeps changing his mind along the way, as well as being disturbed by the marital conflicts of the couple downstairs, and his growing fascination for one of the film’s actresses, whom he’s only encountered through the images of the shoot. There is also a mystery hovering over the apartment next door, from which strange noises emanate, but where no one ever seems to enter or leave. The days and nights gradually begin to lose their meaning.

I suspect we are watching a ghost story. He never finished editing that film. It drove him to madness and eventually suicide. The dream-like visuals, the repetition of a few shots and the iconography suggests he’s trapped in two worlds. And what we see of his life spiraling downwards, and it’s a crazy ride to the end.