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FOUR-STAR FILM : 'Savage Nights'

March 05, 1995|Kevin Thomas

Cyril Collard's 1992 film caused far more of a sensation in France than in the United States, but even so it is a startling, hard-driving autobiographical account of a bisexual Paris filmmaker (Collard, left) following his HIV-positive test result. His response is to live faster, engaging in group sex and simultaneous affairs with a man (Carlos Lopez, right) and a 17-year-old (Romaine Bohringer, in a radiant feature debut) with whom he even agrees to have unprotected sex. Collard, sensibly, doesn't remotely try to get us to like him, but he does create a compelling, unsparing account of a life unraveling. "Savage Nights" won four Cesars just 72 hours after Collard's death from AIDS. (Cinemax Wednesday at 8 p.m.)

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