What sets 'Boarding Gate' apart from other sex-driven, erotic thrillers ('Basic Instinct', 'Femme Fatale', 'Killing Me Softly', 'Wild Side', 'Crimes Of Passion', etc) is that Assayas manages to make an amazingly sexy movie with only a small amount of nudity (only two quick scenes of bare breasts) and no conventional sex scenes. Sure there's plenty of kissing, foreplay, risque shots and sensual moments but no actual sex.
Inglorious Basterds), the unnecessary amount of movie references (we get it, you watch a lot of movies), the cheap excuses to be excessively violent, etc. I don't want Tarantino or Tarantino-related films to be the only respectable work out there to feature Madsen. Thank god Olivier Assayas recognized his talent and made great use of his mannerisms and unique quirks that cant be found in any other actor. His character in 'Boarding Gate' draws a few parallels to Mr. Blond in 'Reservoir Dogs'. Both characters die within the first half of the movie but leave a lasting impression through the closing credits. Whenever Madsen raises his voice its always a treat because he rarely does it. The sudden projection of his voice in two specific scenes in 'Boarding Gate' is up there with Health Ledger's "LOOK AT ME!" moment in 'Batman Begins'. The rest of Boarding Gate's multinational ensemble cast (American, French, Italian and Chinese) features great (although short) performances from Kim Gordon as a tough crime boss and Alex Descas who only appears at the very beginning and end of the film but is still one of the key players in the story. Like in other films, Asia Argento has her annoying moments but overall she does a great job in the lead role. Like 'The Pornographer', 'Trouble Every Day' and 'Humanite', this is another recent french film that doesn't exactly have the most flattering reviews (a 5.1 on IMDB and 30% on Rotten Tomatoes) but if you're someone who enjoys the recent work of Michael Mann, Steven Soderbergh or even Andrea Arnold's 'Red Road' (not to mention Olivier Assayas' recent filmography) I don't see how you cant like 'Boarding Gate'.