Genre: Drama / Thriller
Director: Erik Van Looy
Starring: Koen De Bouw, Filip Peeters, Matthias Schoenaerts, Bruno Vanden Broucke, Koen De Graeve
Duration: 118 min.
Five close friends, all of them married, share a loft to meet their mistresses. One day they find the body of a young woman in the loft. Since there are only five keys to the loft, the five men begin to suspect each other of murder.
Loft is a Belgian film directed by Erik Van Looy. Released in 2008, it received a very popular box-office reception and is currently the most successful film of all time in Belgium. The story is a crime thriller set around an upscale condominium loft in the city of Antwerp.
This was a fairly well written and executed film with a solid ensemble cast of well known (in their home country) actors. The five men all did a fine job as friends who suddenly discover that their cozy arrangement has been turned upside down. The cinematography was very slick with Hollywood like production values, and filled with glamorous sets and locations. A look perhaps reminiscent of a Brian DePalma film but without quite the same creativity. There is however one memorable scene that takes place in a casino, that stands as the highlight of the film. A perfectly orchestrated mix of tension and suspense that includes all five men along with their wives and mistresses who presumably are unaware of each others existence.
The story is a bit flawed though, and though it does manage to remain unpredictable, it doesn't exactly stay believable. As the details are slowly revealed (admittedly very well, the directing is not really at fault here) all the various characters' motivations and actions start to lose sense. Then towards the end, the writing gets a little too clever for itself and drags on too far, squandering the well built tension.
Not surprisingly, the director is currently filming an English language remake scheduled for a 2013 release date. What is baffling to me, is the recently released Netherlands remake. One has to wonder why would you need to remake a film that is already in the same language as the target audience. Perhaps one of you Dutch or Belgian readers could explain the reasons why?