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Film / Reality (2014)

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Realité is a 2014 comedy-drama by Quentin Dupieux that is mostly about making movies. It is quite absurd and plays with the idea of reality so it is hard to tell what actually happens in a way that makes sense, but it mostly follows two characters:

  • Jason Tantra (Alain Chabat) is a wanna-be director who wants to make a horror movie about televisions that kill people for no reason. Bob Marshal, a film producer, might produce that film only if Jason is able to record a convincing groan of pain.
  • Reality is also the name of a girl who is the main character in a film, who happened to find a mysterious video tape. The actress (in universe) also seems to be named Reality.

The action is set in what seems to be California, but several characters are native French speakers who live there; they speak French between them, but much of the film is in English.

This film provides examples of:

  • Adults Are Useless: No adult helps Reality (the character). Quite realistically her parents don't believe her when she first mentions the tape that she found. Later she tries to hide the video tape from every adult.
  • From Beyond the Fourth Wall: In universe. The director of the film Reality plays in interacts with her within his own show. At some point in becomes unclear whether we are seeing that film, or the life or Reality, the actress.
  • Maurice Chevalier Accent: Bob's English is terrible. Especially considering he is a successful businessman who lives in an English speaking country.
  • Mind Screw. At some point Reality (the fictional character) meets a character that seems to be in the same reality as Jason. Also, what is on that video tape that she found is quite confusing. In general, impossible things happen.
  • Shout-Out: Televisions killing people for no reason? This is a shout-out to Rubber by the same director. Bob's questions about how Jason plans to show that televisions actually kill people may reflect questions Quentin Dupieux had to solve when making Rubber.
  • Show Within a Show: Several: the film featuring Reality (the character), the film Jason Tantra wants to make and eventually watches, and he also works on a tv show. And then, whatever is on that video tape that Reality found in her show.