Director: Robin Campillo
Screenplay: Robin Campillo, Gilles Marchand
Starring: Olivier Rabourdin, Kirill Emelyanov, Daniil Vorobyov
Producer: Hugues Charbonneau, Marie-Ange Luciani
Running Time: 128 min
A gang of young eastern European men and boys hang around the Gare du Nord in Paris looking for marks; seemingly acting as prostitutes there is more to their designs on the clients than getting a few euros for sex. Daniel (Olivier Rabourdin) is a lonely businessman who takes a shine to Marek (Kirill Emelyanov) but his initial plan gets twisted and it has life changing consequences for them both.
The first act of the film veers from voyeuristic naturalism to surreal nightmare with Daniil Vorobyov playing Boss, the gang’s leader, with just the right level of menace and bravado. Rabourdin plays Daniel with a quiet fortitude which is a total contrast to Vorobyov’s unhinged crazy eyes performance.
The entire film managed to sustain a high level of ulcer inducing tension. This is a film of social realism; Campillo drawing attention to the cause of immigrants and gay men, refugees and the poor, the outsiders from all walks of life.
Campillo has made a film that at times is full of misery, I cannot lie, but the character arcs are interesting and moving. The film focuses on what is important in life, trying to connect with people and the age old question of can money buy you happiness?
Watch it with a stiff drink in hand.
Eastern Boys is out now on DVD and Blu-Ray, released by Peccadillo Pictures.