6.8/10
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11 user 22 critic

L'empreinte de l'ange (2008)

Elsa, a woman with a long history of depression in the midst of a divorce from her husband of 12 years develops an obsession with a seven year old girl she sees at a birthday party when she... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Elsa Valentin
...
Claire Vigneaux
...
Bernard Vigneaux
Antoine Chappey ...
Antoine
...
Alain Valentin
Michèle Moretti ...
Colette
...
Laurence
Geneviève Rey-Penchenat ...
Mme Corlet
Héloïse Cunin ...
Lola
Arthur Vaughan-Whitehead ...
Thomas
Zacharie Chasseriaud ...
Jérémy
...
Le policier (as Jérémie Nebbou)
Marie-Julie Baup ...
L'infirmière
Pascal Elso ...
L'homme du bar
Isabelle Siou ...
Une amie
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Storyline

Elsa, a woman with a long history of depression in the midst of a divorce from her husband of 12 years develops an obsession with a seven year old girl she sees at a birthday party when she comes to pick up her son Thomas. Determined to find out more about the girl, Elsa uses Thomas as a way into the girl's family by aiding to develop a friendship between Thomas and the girl's brother Jeremy so that in turn Elsa can then befriend the girl's mother Claire. She uses Thomas more and more in her pursuit of this obsession telling her employer and fellow employees that Thomas is seriously ill so that she can run off watch the girl (Lola) wherever she goes. Elsa even tells her parents lies that she is going out with a friend so they will baby-sit so Elsa can even go as far as hiding in the bushes outside of Lola's house and watching her at night. At first Claire doesn't suspect anything but gradually notices that Elsa is paying too much attention to Lola and confronts Elsa. Elsa in turn ... Written by Michelle

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Drama

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Release Date:

13 August 2008 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Mark of an Angel  »

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2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

Wrings the viewer's emotions dry like a sponge
12 September 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

This film has been released in Britain under the title ANGEL OF MINE, although the American title is a direct translation of its original French title which is L'EMPREINTE DE LA ANGE. The 'angel' referred to is a little girl named Lola. This is a very, very strange story, and an extremely harrowing one. The two lead actresses, Catherine Frot and Sandrine Bonnaire, take emotions to the limit and then beyond. What pros they are! Frot has made 88 films and Bonnaire has made 51, including the amazing VAGABOND (1985) of Agnès Varda, where she showed at an early age just how far she could go in playing someone over the edge of human desperation. In this film, the two women are driven far, far over that edge. The scene where they physically fight and try to tear each other apart like demented harpies is deeply shocking, as women rarely are driven to such extremes of clawing, smashing, desperate combat. The director and co-writer of this film is Safy Debbou. Unfortunately, this very shy creature, which we may call The Safy, must be considered of indeterminate sex, as there is no hint as to whether it is male or female, due to the lack of information about it on IMDb. I am inclined to suspect that it may be female, but zoological confirmation of the sex of The Safy is so far lacking. Another thing which is lacking on IMDb is the listing of the title ANGEL OF MINE, so that British cinema-lovers looking up this film will not be able to find it listed at all. I certainly hope that deficiency may be remedied. Is this a conspiracy to keep everyone in the dark? Only joking. But there ought to be a warning on the front of the DVD: 'Unsuitable viewing for the emotionally vulnerable.' There is no blood, no gore, no one gets killed, we don't have to look at corpses and wounds, but we do have something which is almost worse: raw emotional frenzy. There is little one dare say about the film's plot without revealing too much. Catherine Frot had a daughter who died in a hospital fire, and she has been distraught and depressed for years because of this. It has led to the breakup of her marriage, despite the fact that she still has a son. Through the young son, she meets a friend of the son's friend, and thus encounters Sandrine Bonnaire and her daughter Lola. Frot becomes a stalker of the daughter, with whom she is obsessed. I should stress that this film claims to be 'based on true events'. The real story becomes something other than what one expects. After all, there have been far too many films about stalkers. This is not really a stalker film at all, it just seems that way in the beginning. Watch, but beware.


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