What the fuck was that?
Titane is a film that will leave you asking the question, what did I just see? If I had to say what it’s about, if I had to put it into words, I’d say that a psychopath, who sees themselves more mechanical than human, falls pregnant by a Chevrolet, and to escape capture for a killing spree, poses as the long-lost son of a steroid-addicted firefighter captain. You know, the classic tale.
So is it sci-fi? Well, falling pregnant by a car does probably qualify as low-end sci-fi technically. Is it a crime thriller? Well, it starts with a murder spree and follows the killer’s run from the law. Is it a comedy? It’s certainly filled with dark humour and moments that will make you laugh out loud. Is it a horror? It is definitely full of the madness and mayhem you’d expect from a horror. So what is it? I guess I’d say reproductive body horror with elements of splatstick.
Because you see everything from the perspective of the main character, Alexi, you see the others through her kinda contempt, their moments of emotion and vulnerability are played as comical, because she as a psychopath finds them funny. So it did make me wonder at first if this whole ‘pregnant by a car’ thing was maybe just in her head. But as the film goes on, it makes it very clear that all of this is actually happening.
Strangely, the car pregnancy actually manages to feel like just another practical element of this world, while the central conundrum for Alexi is that she actually grows attached to the man whose son she is impersonating. For a half-human psychopath, her view of the most bizarre thing in this film is the unexpected bond she begins to share with another human being.
Starts with a lot of nudity and violence, so expect that right out the gate. Apparently the film has been inspiring a lot of fainting in cinemas, this happened in our showing, so I guess there’s truth to that it. It certainly was enough to make an entire audience in Glasgow go, “OOOWWW!”
Gotta say, to me, Titane felt like a very queer horror. I mean, it starts from the character’s viewpoint that sees objectophilia as normal, and treats a traditional family bond as bizarre. The main character has sexual encounters with both men and women before murdering them. She spends the majority of the film binding down her breasts and living as a man. Her dance on top of the fire truck is very queer. I mean, not saying it’s all not problematic – it’s horror so of course it’s gonna be problematic as fuck – but it comes off as a very queer horror.
One that screams cult favourite.