Adèle's life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who will allow her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and as an adult. In front of others, Adèle grows, seeks herself, loses herself, and ultimately finds herself through love and loss.
Forty-six year old Diane Després - "Die" - has been widowed for three years. Considered white trash by many, Die does whatever she needs, including strutting her body in front of male employers who will look, to make an honest living. That bread-winning ability is affected when she makes the decision to remove her only offspring, fifteen year old Steve Després, from her previously imposed institutionalization, one step below juvenile detention. She institutionalized him shortly following her husband's death due to Steve's attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and his violent outbursts. He was just kicked out of the latest in a long line of facilities for setting fire to the cafeteria, in turn injuring another boy. She made this decision to deinstitutionalize him as she didn't like the alternative, sending him into more restrictive juvenile detention from which he would probably never be rehabilitated. However, with this deinstitutionalization, she has to take care of him ... Written by
A brave acting effort that entertains in moments, but tends to miss its target. This film will please some and frustrate others, hence my rating of 5/10. In general, the film is too schematic and too brief in the quiet moments, opting instead for highly theatrical poses. This is more about a mom and mental health than it is about the characters of Diane and Steve. There is little character development, and, when it does develop, it's due to external circumstances. The transitions in Steve, from calm to manic, are disconnected and ungrounded, making for random slice-of-life, not drama. There are too many nice-but-dysfunctional people in this film and they don't say interesting things or embark on any story arc, but merely prattle their dysfunctions. They're wildly improbable and ornamented and often ring hollow, e.g., Steve's mother, a potty-mouth pole-dancer, but who suddenly becomes a literary translator; ???? She may be a decent mom, but still bristles at being called Madame by the authorities, a psychological nonsense: is she a peasant, a hippie, or a grad student? Here and there, there are bits of anti-English bias, all gratuitous and juvenile. Gratuitous too, is the Steve-Kyla interaction. Instead of anchoring the story of the homeschooling within a thematic subplot, Kyla's part merely throws us off the track, as she suffers, giggles, and then explodes in Steve's face, a moment that's as histrionic and arch as everything else in the film. The character of Steve is a type, not a person; he's an enigma who presented too few reasons for me to care about him. By film's end, this (overlong) journey is sketchy. The main plot device does work well, but is ruined by a ludicrous and self-indulgent last scene.
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