A mockumentary recording the final 200 days of a man under house arrest, “iXieme, Diary of a Prisoner” doesn’t rep the most original concept for a film, but its execution is thoughtful, its imagery striking. Pic, which was a co-winner of the top prize in Locarno’s video competition, is most suited for fests specializing in digi-cinema.
Protagonist Eric Suger is confined at home, tagged electronically with a chip in his ankle for an unspecified crime. Almost entirely unseen, as he holds the camera himself, Suger receives visits from his parole officer, various friends and (later) prostitutes as he sinks into a miasma of loneliness. Gradually, movie builds an oblique portrait of an atomized society, where people die unnoticed in neighboring apartments and everything but real friendship or love is available online. Dashes of wit include the appearance of the self-absorbed parole officer who wants to talk incessantly about his own love life. Using menacing sound effects and mixing in psychedelic digital f/x, pic builds a dreamy, paranoid atmosphere. Tech credits on the Lausanne-lensed production are fine, though running time could be trimmer.