Great films about music tend to transcend the primary audience of those interested in that type of music. Eden is certainly not that kind of film. It is repetitive and emotionally disengaging, an accurate mirror to sweaty, drug fuelled 5am all night clubbing but for those not familiar with the culture it is just that, repetitive and emotionally disengaging. Félix de Givry plays Paul, a French pioneer of Electronic Dance Music in the 1990s. The film follows the breakdown of his various relationships over a couple decades amidst a plethora of clubbing scenes which mesh together and feel tedious rather than atmospheric.
Felix de Givry is a non entity in the lead role, a handsome blank slate. Paul’s cocaine addiction is reduced to cursory mentions of his bank account which is indicative to the film’s decision to put atmosphere in front of character and forgetting that both can go hand in hand. Eden feels emotionally pompous, impenetrable to those on the outside, lacking dramatic punch as Paul never seems to have enough of a rise or fall from grace, considering his supposed addiction problems. It suffers from an intentionally anaesthetic tone which might be relatable to those familiar with the culture, but for everybody else it’s characterised by numbness, lacking potentially ethereal musical and dramatic peaks.
Review by David Rank
Certificate 15 (UK). Running time 128 mins.