“The first film of 2016 which has truly made me get excited and want to start bouncing off the walls like an excessively caffeinated critic” - Thomas Humphrey, TWITCHFILM
“Ambitious and gorgeous” - Boyd van Hoeij, THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
Aloys’ life consists of observing the lives of others. A detective by trade, he spies on the intimacy of strangers and records their every move, compulsively conserving each recording in his home. His collection holds hundreds of videotapes, a growing number that fails nonetheless to fill his loneliness. Since the death of his father and associate, the private eye goes into a voluntary isolation and finds comfort at the bottom of a bottle. As his despair seems less and less redeemable, he feels that he’s getting close to his comeuppance. Following a particularly degenerate night, Aloys panics when he wakes up to find the contents of his camera stolen. The culprit soon manifests herself on the phone, using her mysteriously sensuous voice to lead the introverted man on a “telephone stroll”, an iconoclastic type of therapy through which the subject externalizes his mental universe in order to better explore it. Thanks to these exchanges with a perfect stranger, Aloys begins the long journey towards a redemption that, against all odds, was right in front of his eyes.
An urban fable that fluctuates between a gloomy reality and a dream-like fantastic universe, Swiss filmmaker Tobias Nölle’s ALOYS can be seen as a melancholic version of Jeunet’s AMELIE. The director creates a genuine audiovisual poem on the hardship of living, a theme he broaches with finesse and intelligence. Having worked with the likes of Michael Haneke and Aleksandr Sokurov, the impressive Georg Friedrich plays the title role with remarkable conviction, evoking a sincere fragility that will leave no one untouched. Despite its dark moments, the moving ALOYS remains a tribute to the beauty of everyday life as well as a humanist drama on the importance of reaching out to others. While your eyes may well be full of tears after viewing, your heart is sure to be full of hope.
— Simon Laperrière