I was too freaked about my destroyed iPhone to concentrate on Abel Ferrara‘s Welcome to New York, which screened last night at 9 pm, but Variety‘s Scott Foundas had this reaction: “The career-imploding misadventures of former IMF chief (and presumptive French presidential candidate) Dominique Strauss-Kahn get filtered through the uniquely lurid prism of director Abel Ferrara in Welcome to New York, a bluntly powerful provocation that begins as a kind of tabloid melodrama and gradually evolves into a fraught study of addiction, narcissism and the lava flow of capitalist privilege.

Gerard Depardieu‘s audacious performance is undeniably the pic’s chief selling point….he seems more present, more committed to the role than any of the several dozen he has played since Claude Chabrol’s Bellamy in 2009, and he charges brazenly into whatever breach Ferrara demands of him — especially in several scenes that require the once-strapping, feral actor to expose his now-bloated, porcine body for the camera’s unforgiving scrutiny. When Devereaux is forced to strip nude by prison officers and must agonizingly contort his body to complete the task, it’s the actor and not the character who conjures our sympathies. Elsewhere, though, it is Depardieu the canny, empathic performer who finds a tragic dimension in the heretofore monstrous Devereaux — a man of large, insatiable appetites he is at a loss to control.”