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Solange is unhappy. She's a meter maid in Tours, working in the rain, subject to verbal abuse from those she cites. Her husband Patrick is consumed by the work of finishing their new house: carpet, tile, faucets. He's also a hothead, subjecting Sonange to tantrums. While she's often quiet and withdrawn, she longs to be a singer. When by chance she meets Mylène, an accomplished, beautiful Parisian writer she admires, Solange gives her a demo tape. Mylène is encouraging, a friendship of sorts develops, and when Solange despairs after a series of personal, emotional setbacks, she heads for Mylène's doorstep in Paris. Does a singing career await, and what about Patrick? Written by
If I were a judge of an award, I would vote for Florence Vignon to get the Best Actress award. She gives a superb, terrific performance in this film. The expression on her face and her eyes convey very well the complicated feelings and emotions of her troubled character, Solange. By her acting, one can feel what Solange feels. One can understand her reasons, her impulses, her changing, and her heart. One can sympathize with Solange, and some might even be able to identify with this character. Vignon really made Solange come alive.
Apart from the acting, there are many other good things about this movie. One is that this heartfelt movie has given some audience the badly-needed encouragement and inspiration to pursue their dream and helped them to restore hope in life. Moreover, though this film focuses on the unreasonably unhappy feelings of a married woman, I find that I have experienced many same feelings, many same moments as this character. The feelings experienced by Solange are really universal. What this character feels is not only reserved for married women, but is also felt by many people no matter whether they are man or woman, married or single, western or oriental, simple people or great philosophers, living in the present or living thousands of years ago. For some people, it is very easy to identify with Solange because sometimes you can feel very unhappy, feel very bored with your life and you don't know exactly why. You don't know for sure which person or which thing is the real cause of your unhappiness. Things around you seem to go smoothly. People close to you are still nice to you. But you know deep inside you are unhappy. You don't know for sure if changing your job or your lifestyle will make your life better or worse. You just know that now you are a living dead and you don't want to go on living like this. For some of you who have ever asked yourself , `Are there more to life than this?', `If I pursue my dream, will it turn out to be just an illusion?', you will find Solange as your kindred spirit. For some of you who have ever hoped someone else will help you change your life, this film might give you a good lesson.
Another thing that I like is that there are no real villains in this movie. Every main character shows both their good and bad sides. Every character here deserves sympathy though they have their own weaknesses and stupidity.
One of the most memorable scenes in this movie is a scene at the car park when Solange let out her long-suppressed anger and frustration. This scene is as powerful and deserves applauding as another car park scene in `Fried Green Tomatoes.' While the audience cannot release their pressure directly like this in real life, Vignon and Kathy Bates help us release it indirectly.
But my most favourite scene is the scene when Solange sit alone in the park. I feel connected to her the most in this scene, though I think it is too short. I wish this scene could be much longer, or could be inserted repeatedly into the story. I understand that scenes like this-character doing nothing-are not necessary at all in the narrative process. Scenes like this have no effect on the story, and including them will make those mainstream audience crying dull or bore and lessen the box office receipts. But for me, scenes like this are the ones that have the greatest emotional impact. I love this film very much, but I think I could have loved it more if it dared to discard `story' and gives higher priority to feelings and emotions of characters. (But if any director do as I wish, it's highly likely he will have great trouble seeking financial support for his next film.)
Eventually, I think Solange made the right decision at the end.
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