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Eighteen-year-old Mathieu is vacationing at the beach with his family when he meets local teen Cédric. After an extremely erotic kiss, the boys begin a passionate romance, complete with skinny-dipping at night, nude dancing on the beach and intense lovemaking in the dunes. Yet as Mathieu grapples with his sexuality and copes with his sick mother, absent father and annoying kid sister his bond with Cédric grows stronger until it bursts. Written by
"Presque rien," a simple story of two 19-year-old youths who meet and fall in love while both are on summer vacation, offers an affecting romance of vascillating passion.
Told by director Sebastian Lifshitz and writers Stephane Bouquet and Lifshitz through a series of vignettes--often presented in a nonsequential timeline--the unfoldment provides some work on the part of the viewer to position these disjointed fragments together.
However, the basic scenario is so simple that the unfoldment does unite in post-reflection. It is an interesting tale, made plausible by two fine performances by the leads.
Jeremie Elkaim as Matthiew evokes a slightly moody, troubled youth, longing for affection, and willing to give of himself in a new relationship. Elkaim's work beautifully conveys Matthiew's need for companionship and for escape from a staid and mundane domestic environment.
Stephane Rideau presents yet another of his remarkable performances as Cedric. Rideau immerses himself in the role so skillfully that his craft brilliance is taken for granted. As close to the late James Dean as has been seen recently, Rideau takes his place in the Alain Delon legacy as one of France's leading young actors. Rideau possesses an arresting countenance: even his pointed ears, protruding chin, an off-centered eye, and crooked lips seem to contribute to his handsomeness. His Cedric is non-intellectual, expressing primitive emotions in his approach to life; yet, his ardor for Matthiew rings undeniably genuine and true.
The rest of the cast of "Presque rien" contribute to this slice-of-life tale, and we are pleased to have an opportunity to glimpse fragments of a both playful and poignant summertime romance.
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