‘Sauvage / Wild’ Film Review: Debut Feature Examines a Gay Hustler’s Life Without Sentimentality

  • The Wrap
‘Sauvage / Wild’ Film Review: Debut Feature Examines a Gay Hustler’s Life Without Sentimentality
There have been quite a few high-quality American films about male prostitution, from John Schlesinger’s Oscar-winning “Midnight Cowboy” to Gus Van Sant’s “My Own Private Idaho” and Gregg Araki’s “Mysterious Skin,” and from France there has been Patrice Chéreau’s “L’Homme blessé,” and several films from André Téchiné, most notably “J’embrasse pas,” which translates as “I Don’t Kiss.”

Camille Vidal-Naquet’s first feature “Sauvage/Wild” is very much in the Téchiné tradition of “J’embrasse pas,” and the subject of kissing or not kissing is actually central to the narrative. What’s most impressive about this film is the intricacy of Naquet’s screenplay, which plays out in a series of subtly mirroring episodes that follow the life of Leo, a 22-year-old street kid played by Félix Maritaud, who made an impression on screen in “Bpm (Beats Per Minute)” and carries this movie almost singlehandedly.
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