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1760s France. Suzanne is shocked when her bourgeois family sends her to a convent. There she faces oppression and torment, leading her to fight back and expose the dehumanizing effect of cloistered life.
Villa Amalia is the story of Ann, a musician, whose life is turned upside down by a kiss. When she sees Thomas kissing another woman, Ann makes a clean break, leaving him and everything else far behind her. Suddenly unsure of everything that seemed so certain, Ann knows only that she must change her life and become someone else to find herself. With her music and the friendship of Georges, who pops out of her distant past, she sets off on a journey that will take her to an island where the Villa Amalia stands. Written by
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I was looking forward to seeing this story of a woman escaping her former life and creating a new one as it sounded brilliant and filled with potential, especially with Isabelle Huppert playing the lead role of Ann.
Unfortunately, almost everything that could go wrong with the movie does. Let's start with the direction, which is self-indulgent and completely ineffective. There is some good cinematography here, but absolutely no purpose behind it. The use of music is inelegant, clashing with the scenes. We jump from one scene to the other with no sense of pacing or of a bigger picture, much like a bad artsy flick from the 70s.
Isabelle Huppert, usually a solid actress, barely attempts to instill any emotion and seems content to go through the motions. The worse performance I have seen of her. Every other actor that appears in Villa Amalia is even worse, with the exception of Jean-Hughes Anglade, who breathes some life to Georges. Alas, the script doesn't give much to work with and with such poor direction, even Anglade is forgettable.
The story absolutely goes nowhere, the dialogues appear more like rambling, even if we sense there is a point to it. Ann is replicating patterns of abandonment she herself suffered from her father, who felt the same need for detachment she now feels. But the screenplay is terribly inelegant when trying to drive that point.
The movie's ending is much like its beginning; messy and pointless
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