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on August 3, 2011
Someone wrote "It was an OK gay flick, but not a great one." This is the mentality that makes me crazy: all the porn-heads who insist upon ghettoizing any film with any homoerotic content whatsoever as "gay." True, like the hammer that can only see nails, if you are a fan of soft-core guy-on-guy action, this movie was o.k. at best. If, however, you care about things like subtle undertones, an intrinsically coherent story, good acting and gorgeous photography, this is one very good film. Long-ago sex pot Claudia Cardinale has aged well into that manipulating chienne from hell who sends good gay boys everywhere straight to their shrink's office. Because the movie is Tunisian and sensitive to contemporary Arab attitudes toward same-gender relationships, The String (it's a pun on "the son" in French) rises to the status of very, very good film. If, however, eye candy is your sole hunger, the men here are indeed very beautiful, but that is far from the filmmaker's sole preoccupation, and true, you'd be better satisfied elsewhere. Have a nice trip, but absolutely do stay out of the deep end until you are a little more grown up. TEKNOZEN 2vii11
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on December 4, 2010
This was a nice film. I read some of the other reviews and thought I'd give it a try and I'm glad I did. I half expected more negativity from the Muslim perspective, and was surprised to see that wasn't the focus of the film. It was a tad choppy at certain parts, but overall pretty well done. I'm not sure if I would use the words "torridly romantic" as is used in the description....... I would call it a nice gay romance story with a happy ending. Who doesn't like that? Worth the 3 bucks to rent it.
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on August 28, 2011
Enjoyable piece of fluff. What is there not to like: gorgeous scenery, gorgeous people (including the still ravishing Claudia Cardinale), happy ending with everyone being open-minded and accepting and loving. Just like Hollywood used to make them. Not a maladjusted, self-destructive person in sight. And that's A-OK with me.

But to view this film as an exploration of "class, cultural and sexual differences", as the DVD case describes it, is ludicrous. Malik and Bilal are going to form political parties? They formed parties all right, but the kind where there's lots of champagne and dancing and everyone is having a good time. "The String" is no more grounded in reality than an Astaire/Rogers movie had anything to do with the Great Depression.

Cardinale and Salim Kechiouche are great. Antonin Stahly is rather stiff, and comes across more as a whiny, spoiled child than as a psychologically damaged man. (And what is it about the string? Apron strings maybe?) Everything about the movie--photography, actors, music--was beautiful.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it for what it is. It is refreshing that perhaps gay films have reached the point where they can emulate old-fashioned Hollywood romance. Not a position to be sneezed at.
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on September 7, 2010
Saw this movie in a movie festival in L.A. last July.
The crowd loved the movie and especially LOVED Salim Kéchiouche.
Too bad he's not mentioned here on Amazon, but he's clearly why people saw the movie.
We all know him from movies by Gaël Morel and François Ozon. Full Speed,Three Dancing Slaves, etc.
Especially his iconic appearance as the boxer in Les Amants Criminels: Criminal Lovers and
Criminal Lovers (AUS) ( Les Amants criminels ) [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.0 Import - Australia ]
Wonderful movie. Great acting.
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on January 5, 2013
No one could possibly have been more perfectly cast for this movie than legendary Italian actress Claudia Cardinale who flawlessly executes her role as the proverbial passive-aggressive, guilt-inducing mother of Antonin Stahley (Malik). Her tenacity is portrayed by the "string" wrapped around him every time he feels the brunt of his mother's interference in his life, particularly after he falls in love with her groundskeeper,Bilal.

The process of Malik's coming out, especially against the backdrop of the Muslim culture and values, evolves like a fairy tale romance. Bilal's masculine beauty and charm, his humility stemming from his subservient position, and the tenderness and passion he ultimately shares with Malik when they consummate their love all make for a beautiful love story. Malik's Mom, Sara (Cardinale) finds the young men in bed together. The follow-up is priceless.

The acting here is irreproachable, and the production values and cinematography superb. I enjoyed the soundtrack tremendously, especially diva Patty Pravo's rendition of "La Bambola".

I recommend this 5 star gem with no reservations.
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on September 27, 2011
Bound by motherly love, interested in a man that is below him on a social scale, the man is imprisoned by who he is and what he really wants to be. It's a roller coaster ride of emotion. One moment you're applauding him and the next, you are actually hating the man for his coldness. Yet, let it be said that truth does find its way through the muddle and pain of a tortured soul. Let's face it. Without truth, why exist? Interesting movie. The filming was rather poor, but the story kept my interest.
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on January 9, 2011
Absolutely! After viewing so many gay films that end tragically and sad, it is really heartwarming to view this film and smile at the ending! A touching, wonderful film.
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on March 22, 2014
I can't believe this only has 4 stars. The scenery was amazing, the characters felt authentic and real, how the relationship unfolded was beautiful, and I really loved seeing this culture. The mix of European and Middle Eastern was very unique and interesting. There are subtitles, but I hope that doesn't stop anyone from watching because it really was beautiful!
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on February 28, 2014
The passion and chemistry between the two men is so believable and strong that it makes 90% of it's competition fizzle out to nothing but teen angst soap operas! You can feel the sexual tension in the air and the actors are handsome and natural (not stereotypes). The man playing the handyman is extremely attractive and charismatic. Only towards the end of the movie does it turn saccharine and lose some of its momentum. Nonetheless, compared to artsy trash like "Broken Sky", this film is a masterpiece!
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on February 3, 2016
I've watched this twice now and enjoyed it both times. The story is of a mixed French-Tunisian young man who returns home to live with his mother (Claudia Cardinale) and finds love with a Tunisian man who helps his mother take care of the house. The guys are very appealing in a reserved kind of way, and the setting in Tunisia with a culturally French family is fascinating.
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