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Review: Rust And Bone

By PETER KEOUGH  |  December 18, 2012
2.5 2.5 Stars



One image from Jacques Audiard's overwrought melodrama suggests what a shimmering, mysterious movie it might have been. Through the glass wall of an aquarium tank, a killer whale emerges with its giant cartoon face, imitating playfully the movements of its former trainer Stéphanie (Marion Cotillard). You almost forget that a little earlier the creature had ripped her legs off. That accident is just the start of a litany of calamities. On the bright side, Stéphanie emerges from her post-accident depression, forms an unlikely liaison with troubled martial-arts fighter Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts), and adjusts to mobility with her new prosthetics. But then people get fired, love is betrayed, families are broken up — so that when a little kid is standing on an ice-covered pond, you pretty much know what's going to happen next. The lugubrious plot takes a refreshing detour when Stéphanie pokes into the world of extreme fighting. Cotillard's performance is a match for the histrionics, but Rust and Bone still could cut a lot of fat.

PKEOUGH@PHX.COM

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