For the first two reels, it’s the most conventional plot Schanelec has drafted by a mile, complete with a central, clearly lensed protagonist, personality traits that seem designed to earn our sympathies (and, for the most part, they do), and even manifest desires and hopes. It’s a narrative that generates anticipation in us, for her, and thus has us looking beyond the present. Then, as if waking from a daze, Marseille snaps and breaks.
The film’s baffling (in)conclusion makes those ellipses which we thought we had “read” correctly now yawn like voids. Having built its rhythmic drive and delicate narrative edifice from this pattern of slight disruptions,Marseille now makes those ruptures gape wide, retrospectively intimating something enormously, frighteningly unknowable.