Locarno International Film Festival In CompetitionRiviera
is a very broad title for Anne Villaceque's narrow look at a mother and daughter trying to get along amid the temptation and corruption that surrounds them on the Cote d'Azur.
Slow and sometimes incoherent, the film is unlikely to draw much attention to its ill thought out tale of what can happen to a pretty blonde who doesn't know how to say no.
Using close-ups to the point of claustrophobia, writer/director Villaceque follows Antoinette (Miou-Miou) as she cleans rooms at a swanky hotel and worries about her seldom seen daughter Stella (Vahina Giocante
), who table dances at a nightclub named Milk.
Very little information is offered about the pair although there's no man about the house and when not staring vacantly, Antoinette is not above inviting the pizza delivery guy in for a beer.
Stella is vacuously gullible and believes pretty much what any man tells her including the nightclub boss who says that if she's a very good girl she can make a lot of money and get a boob job.
Impressed by a respectable looking real estate salesman named Romansky (Elie Semoun
), whose room she cleans, Mom puts a card from Milk under his door. Romansky is the kind of man who is delighted equally by the automatic curtains in his room and the pornography on the television. He gets himself quickly down to Milk where he immediately spots Stella, and its downhill from there.
What might have been a cautionary tale is let down by inadequate narrative, empty scenes and the director's evident enchantment with Giocante, a love affair not entirely shared by the camera.
Agat Films & CIE -- Nicolas Blanc
No MPAA rating
Running time 94 mins.