Credit: Guy Ferrandis/SBS Productions/Courtesy of Sundance Institute
by Sam C. Mac Featured Film

Passages — Ira Sachs [Sundance ’23 Review]

February 4, 2023

With Passages, American indie filmmaker Ira Sachs builds on the not-unexpected Euro-arthouse move he made with 2019’s underwhelming Cannes competition swing Frankie, which threw a number of French thespians together with some UK actors and one American (Greg Kinnear) for a vacation cum somber family gathering on the southern Portuguese seaside. If that film suggested that the director behind such emotionally nuanced and location-specific New York stories as 2014’s Love Is Strange and 2012’s Keep the Lights On might not have the same firm grasp of socio-cultural markers in a foreign country, Passages – which takes place entirely in Paris, and features another variously European cast – doesn’t do much to convince otherwise. But more distressingly, Sachs’ latest presents damning evidence of a further decline in the overall distinctiveness of this once-exciting auteur’s aesthetic. 

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Published as part of InRO Weekly — Volume 1, Issue 5.