The Wall | Chicago Reader

The Wall

Alain Berliner (My Life in Pink) uses the long-simmering antagonism between the Flemings and the Walloons in Belgium as the premise for this cautionary parable, one of the hour-long films commissioned for the French TV series “2000 Seen By.” On the eve of the millennium, an enormous wall divides Brussels between the Flemings to the north and the Walloons to the south. Caught almost literally in the middle is Albert, the good-natured owner of a chips stand; Berliner gives him a Flemish love interest, casting the two of them as a farcical Romeo and Juliet, and the film?s campy moments and musical interludes recall Berliner?s earlier hit. But the director is equally intent on conjuring up a tone of Kafkaesque nightmare, and like the characters? competing tongues, the reconciliation between whimsy and terror proves elusive.

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