5 January 2013 6:26 PM, PST | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Ursula Meier’s “Sister,” Switzerland’s shortlisted Oscar entry, centers on a young woman and boy struggling to live in a drab, unnamed Swiss valley town, while a glittering mountain resort presides above them. The original title of the film, “L’enfant d’en haut” (roughly translating to “The Child from Above”), alludes to the high-low themes of the film, but also suggests something fable-like, even extra-natural. Simon (Kacey Mottet Klein) is a self-employed 12-year-old. During the day he rides a gondola up the mountain, insinuates himself into the posh ski resort at its summit and, when no one is looking, rifles through the wealthy patrons’ goggles, gloves and skis and selects what will recoup a good selling price. His clients range from a prepubescent neighbor to a fleet of burly resort employees. After a day’s work Simon brings his earnings back down the mountain to a lone apartment complex that stands. »

- Beth Hanna

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