Cyberpunk Review » Chrysalis - French Cyberpunk Movie ou Non?

June 21, 2007

Chrysalis - French Cyberpunk Movie ou Non?

Chrysalis Screencap


Sometimes I really hate being a stupid American (meaning only knowing one language). France seems intent on punishing US cyberpunk fans by putting out a number of great French cyberpunk flicks and then not getting them released here in the US (yes, I’m being facetious - it seems that most great recent foreign Sci-Fi films can’t even get DVD deals here until years after their release). Potentially, we have another one called Chrysalis, directed by Julien Leclercq, which Vesper posted on the Meatspace Forums. Unfortunately for me, the film makers don’t want to waste their time translating information about the film into English. I did take this site into Babelfish and extracted a few interesting tidbits:


Chrysalis Screencap


The action proceeds in Paris, in 2025. The body of an immigrant young person is found with strange scratches around the eyes. David is in charge of the investigation. In the heart of the private clinic high-tech of professor Minkowski, Manon, his daughter, raises the same scratches. To the sides of his assistant Marie Becker, David will have to establish the bond between these two universes. Believing to go up the wire of a vast traffic of bodies, David will actually find itself in search of his own memory.

Is the film described like a futuristic whodunnit and lorgne openly towards the science fiction - if one omits some exceptions which dared musarder towards this kind like Enki Bilal and Pierre Jolivet, it remains which? Before deciding, it will have to be seen how the scenario writer will negotiate the turn of what is announced at the beginning as a police investigation broken with the commonplaces to a metaphysical giddiness which should take along the spectator in unknown destinations (one has a presentiment of a business of handling and identity disorder but otherwise more interesting than Rene Manzor and Dédales, thank you well). The least which one can say, it is that Chrysalis dares to attend the kind if not very frequentable in the Hexagon cinema known as of kind. With regard to the casting, one should find, in addition to essential Albert Dupontel, Marthe Keller, Melanie Thierry and Marie Guillard.


Enki Bilal of course provided us with the Nikopol Trilogy graphic novel and Immortel. Here’s the trailer, which certainly looks cyberpunkish…(go here for a larger widescreen trailer):



Here’s where I hope some cool French speaking dude or chick will take pity on me and do some research to give me the low-down on this movie (Please!). I’ve already come to grips with the fact that it won’t be getting a US release this year (or ever), so I’ll be getting my copy on Ebay, just as I did Renaissance and Immortel (no, US distributors, I’m not planning to wait for your lame asses to get around to giving me a legit R1 copy - release it when everyone else gets it if you want me to pay YOU for it).

This post has been filed under Upcoming Movies by SFAM.


[…] From SFAM […]

SFAM said:

As usual, is already on top of this film, with links to a number of trailers.

Unfortunately I still can’t find a good story description in English. I’ve contacted the distributor, so we’ll see if that works.

Case said:

From the trailer alone, I’m all over this film like stink on a monkey. Thanks for the head’s up, SFAM! Let’s hope it’ll at least hit DVD before too long…

Case said:

It’s also of note that Enki Bilal also directed two other films which look very much in the IMMORTEL vein, entitled BUNKER PALACE HOTEL and TYKHO MOON (both of which just look INCREDIBLE, in my opinion). Unfortunately, neither has ever been released on DVD (and, in some cases, even video), so…we’re kind of out of luck there.

June 22, 2007

Laythstag said:

If you are not against downloading you can find TYKHO MOON here:

and the subtitles here:

I have not tried to download it myself yet, so I cannot vouch for the quality of the video and subtitles.

June 24, 2007

Case said:

It has it’s own myspace page now…

Of course, it’s of little help, because…well…that’s all in French, too.

SFAM said:

Nem from the Meatspace Forums did help out with some of the translation:

The action takes place at Paris, in 2025. The body of a young immigrant (girl) is found with strange scars around her eyes. David (the cop) is given the inquiry. In the heart of the high tech clinic of professor Minkowski, Manon, his daughter, ‘wears’ the same scars. Besides her associate Marie Becker, David will have to establish the link between those two ‘cases’. Believing he is discovering a vast organ traffic network, David is actually in a quest for his own memory.

Because its his wife’s assassin, David Hoffman (Albert Dupontel), lieutenant in european police, agrees to get back to his job to track down a dangerous trafficker suspicious of several murders. An inquire who will lead him in a top-notch technology clinic directed by professor Brugen.

When the truth places itself in the heart of memory, the memory reveals being precious, object of everyone’s will. However, some memories are never erased.

The movie is described as a futuristic ‘polar’ which tends to go towards science-fiction, to a couple of exceptions ( the rest of the sentence makes no sense to me… ) Before pronouncing ourselves, we will have to see how the realisator will negotiate the turn which, at first, seems like a police inquiry towards a ‘metaphysics giddiness’ which will lead the viewer into unknown destinations.

June 25, 2007

Illusive Mind said:

Ooooh, more Euro-Punk!

Which between itself and Japanese Cyberpunk probably outguns American Cyberpunk Cinema for the last ten years. (At least in consistency of output).

June 26, 2007

Klaw said:

Unrelated point SFAM but have you tried Worldlingo plugin for Firefox? It directly translates foreign websites on the fly, without having to cut and paste (and hunt for language pulldown menus)… works fairly well, I was reading a German cyberpunk blog with it, makes life easier. Unfortunately doesn’t translate movies. :/

Jehuty said:

I am French and in my country, I Know only one language, French
One does not learn well English at the school

But I have some smattering of English and I can translate some sentence but it will not be great quality -_-

SFAM said:

Hi Jehuty,

If you could translate and post the story from the main website, I would love it!

June 27, 2007

Jehuty said:

“David Hoffman (Albert Dupontel), lieutenant of criminal police, he agree to do come back for track a dangerous dealer, suspect of murderer and suspect to have kill his wife
For the investigation, he go in a technological private clinic, manage by the profesor Brügen”

(The remainder is a metaphor difficult to translate)

“When the true live in the heart of memory, the memory become a precious item covet
Nevertheless, some memory never erase”

SFAM said:

Jehuty, do you get the sense that this movie deals with memory modification?

Jehuty said:

It seems that this movie dealt with amnesia
I don’t know if it natural or forced

SFAM said:

Thanks so much for the translations, Jehuty. I am hoping to determine whether this is a cyberpunk movie or not. At this point, my guess is, “yes, it is.” I’m thinking the memory loss/modification is due to technology. Otherwise, why make the setting a near-future setting (2025)?

June 30, 2007

pacey said:

Don’t understand why you think you could not get Immortel in the US. I ordered it from the US a full 1.5 years before it was available in England. This was from

July 1, 2007

SFAM said:

Hi Pacey, believe it or not, I actually track this stuff fairly well. We did not get Immortel here for quite some time after other places. Worse, we never had a release, so we didn’t see it then either.

July 6, 2007

Evil Wraith said:

“Immortel (ad vitam)” surely ain’t the first one to pick when pointing at Enki Bilal’s movies. In fact, it’s the worst of them. If you want a real classic cyberpunk flick, you should take “Bunker Palace Hotel” which was Bilal’s first excursion into filmmaking. It is really a great film albeit being a very cold and cynic, almost misanthropical one. I’d even put it on the same level with Riddley Scott’s “Blade Runner”. Unfortunately, “Bunker Palace Hotel” hasn’t been released on DVD anywhere yet (not even in France) - up to now. A few weeks ago, there had been a DVD release in Germany. But somehow nobody seemed to take notice of the release - There aren’t any reviews yet and if you take a trip with google, you’ll find only very little information about “Bunker Palace Hotel”. It looks like this film had been hushed up for almost 20 years. Well, it would make sense, for the movie came out in 1989 when the Sovjet Socialist Republics collapsed and “Bunker Palace Hotel” shows a very cynical vision of a futuristic Sovjet Union falling apart.

P.S.: I hope there aren’t too many mistakes in my posting - I’m from Germany. No warranty for proper English ;-).

I follow this site daily… How did I miss this posting! Damn! I’ve seen all of Enki’s films and in fact know him from years ago via Metal Hurlant.

Must… find… this… film…

July 7, 2007

Scooter McCrae said:

Actually, both of Bilal’s previous films were released on DVD in Japan, but neither one has English subtitles (although I see a helpful visitor here has posted subs for TYKHO MOON, so I’m going to see if I can rip my disc and add this sub file to a burn).

BUNKER PALACE HOTEL is an okay transfer while TYKHO looks much nicer on disc (much brighter color palette), but that appears to be an aesthetic choice as well since BUNKER is meant to look drab. A soundtrack CD was released for BUNKER PALACE as well which is quite lovely.

Even without subs both films are compellingly watchable and much more interesting than IMMORTEL (which I liked, but didn’t love).

May 27, 2008

zedley said:

Anyone have the english subtitle for this movie ?

June 30, 2008

thenostromo said:

I’ve watched the movie with English subtitles that I obtained from:
Great film! Very highly recommended.

October 10, 2008

Biosethereal said:

This is the entire movie plus english subs. The subs are off time by a second or so but it’s till very good and I highly recomend it.

Lots of heavy “mind manipulation” in the plot and aside from the scenary and the theam there is not much else that is to super futuristic, but I really dig that sort of thing. When it’s just like now just a little more advanced. Cars don’t fly yet but we can do retnal scans with our pens. =D

February 5, 2009

Jack Thursby said:


I’ve seen a few French sci-fi films recently (Eden Log, Dante 01), but this was by far the best. Although I found the plot somewhat predictable, it was extremely well made (particularily for a first-time director).

Your presence at RT is sorely missed but this site more than makes up for it, you’ve done a great job!

September 3, 2009

Laserbeak said:

It was awful.

downer said:

It was nice to see the lead female role from “Babylon A.D.” also a lead in this movie. Unfortunately, some of the fight scenes seemed to drag on to me. But overall it was a good movie, especially for a foreign film I had never heard of.

Bought the DVD a few months back off a USA store shelf and its dubbed in English. In some places the dubbing comes across like Japanamation, though.

It’s very annoying to have to get foreign DVDs that have English dubbing or subtitles, but are only avaiable with foreign region codes. I also sometimes have to buy a DVD from a foreign website, or wait for over a year until a movie reaches a worldwide audience for me to hear about it.

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