Review: Welcome To New York (2014)

Welcome To New York

Plucked straight from the headlines, Abel Ferrera’s controversial new film Welcome To New York features a terrific performance – warts and all – from Gérard Depardieu. He plays Mr. Deveraux, a sleazy, power-hungry and sex-obsessed businessman whose hedonistic lifestyle is upturned when he’s convicted of molesting a hotel housekeeper. It’s a messy, turgid concoction of rabid hotel hook-ups, stilted monologues and despicable behaviour. Yet there’s something hypnotic about the way its constructed and the messages it contains within its turgid surface. The film takes on a whole new meaning towards the third act when Mr. Deveraux is kept under lock and key in a townhouse, verbally tormented by his stretched-to-her-limits wife, played extraordinarily well by Jacqueline Bisset. But what Welcome To New York is, more than anything else, is a showcase for Depardieu that also happens to mirror happenstances in his own life and the life of disgraced French economist Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

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