Li’l Quinquin

Showtimes

“A wonderfully weird and unexpectedly hilarious murder mystery.” – Scott Foundas, Variety

A pair of bumbling small town detectives investigate a hilariously strange mystery involving murder, madness and farm animals in director Bruno Dumont’s one-of-a-kind comedy/thriller  Li’l Quinquin.  Dumont (L’humanité), an auteur often considered a spiritual heir to Robert Bresson, reveals his considerable talents for dark, slapstick comedy in Li’l Quinquin, which originally aired as a four-part TV miniseries in France. Set in a small seaside town in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region (where Dumont himself grew up), the film centers around a series of grisly murders: The body parts of the victims are found stuffed inside cows and other farm animals. As two bumbling cops, the Clouseau-like Captain Van der Weyden (Bernard Pruvost) and Lieutenant Carpentier (Philippe Jore), try to stop the killer before he—or she—strikes again, a few local kids, with little to occupy them now that school’s out for the summer, do some investigating on their own. Leading the gang is the tough-looking tyke of the title, unforgettably played by Alane Delhaye (who, like most of the cast here, is a nonprofessional actor).  Increasingly strange and morally complex hijinks ensue. Dumont’s absurdist metaphysical murder mystery prompts inevitable comparisons to Twin Peaks and True Detective, but its offbeat gallows humor, sly examination of racism and xenophobia, and overriding concern with good versus evil, make it a wholly original, and wholly engrossing, experience. (Dir. by Bruno Dumont, 2015, France, in French with subtitles, 197 mins., Not Rated)