Gaspar Noé's harrowing and misanthropic story has an aging butcher as he wanders through life -- just out of jail, unemployed, and looking for trouble in the city he utterly hates: Paris. He can't get work, and quickly becomes broke -- the classic "from bad to worse" situation. Fortunately, he's got a gun and three bullets. Noé isn't exactly known for subtlety -- whether he's punctuating each cut or pan with the sound of a gunshot or using a 30-second countdown to warn viewers not to watch his movie's finale (not nearly as graphic as you might have heard) -- and I Stand Alone stands, well, alone as one of his most graphic creations. As a film, it's overbearing -- almost completely told via voice-over and hateful in the extreme. As a testament to the decay of society, is Noé a chronicler or a contributor? You be the judge. For what it's worth, I think he's mostly just posing.

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