Put in charge of his young son, Alain leaves Belgium for Antibes to live with his sister and her husband as a family. Alain's bond with Stephanie, a killer whale trainer, grows deeper after Stephanie suffers a horrible accident.
Liège, Belgium. Sandra is a factory worker who discovers that her workmates have opted for a EUR1,000 bonus in exchange for her dismissal. She has only a weekend to convince her colleagues to give up their bonuses in order to keep her job.
Biopic of the iconic French singer Édith Piaf. Raised by her grandmother in a brothel, she was discovered while singing on a street corner at the age of 19. Despite her success, Piaf's life was filled with tragedy.
During the early years of Nazi occupation of France in World War II, romance blooms between Lucile Angellier (Michelle Williams), a French villager, and Lieutenant Bruno von Falk (Matthias Schoenaerts), a German soldier.
Kristin Scott Thomas,
In Victorian England, the independent and headstrong Bathsheba Everdene attracts three very different suitors: Gabriel Oak, a sheep farmer; Frank Troy, a reckless Sergeant; and William Boldwood, a prosperous and mature bachelor.
Elise and Didier fall in love at first sight, in spite of their differences. He talks, she listens. He's a romantic atheist, she's a religious realist. When their daughter becomes seriously ill, their love is put on trial.
Felix van Groeningen
As adults, best friends Julien and Sophie continue the odd game they started as children -- a fearless competition to outdo one another with daring and outrageous stunts. While they often act out to relieve one another's pain, their game might be a way to avoid the fact that they are truly meant for one another.
Lonely and destitute, Alain leaves the north of France for his sister's house in Antibes after becoming the sole guardian of his estranged five-year-old son Sam. When he lands a job as a bouncer in a nearby nightclub, things quickly start to look up for the itinerant father and son. Then one night, after breaking up a fight in the club, he meets the radiant Stephanie, and slips her his number after dropping her off safely at home. Though her position on the high end of the social spectrum makes romance an unlikely prospect for the pair, a tragic accident at Marineland robs her of her legs, and finds her reaching out in desperation to him. Her spirit broken by the same tragedy that took her legs, she gradually finds the courage to go on living trough transcendent moments spent with him -- a man with precious little pity, but an enormous love of life.
I watched this film at the Canes Film Festival, audience expectation was high the huge Palais auditorium completely filled. Jacques Audiard is my favourite director, as with Tahir Rahim in A Prophet and Roman Duris in The Beat that my heart skipped, Audiard managed to get an astounding performance from his male lead Schoenaerts, performed as a brutal man lacking the capability to show warmth or love to his young son and the women that cross his path, his performance as a bouncer come fist fighter for money is always believable though completely unsympathetic. You wish him to succeed though you find it hard to like him so often does his character disappoint, seemingly incapable of love and sensitivity, his straight forward requests for sex come out as comic rather than charming, but his open down-to-earth approach and honesty, often gets him what he desires. Meeting Cotillard he is met and challenged by a very strong woman, damaged she needs to find herself again, he could possibly help, at least initially physically rather than emotionally. As their characters interact throughout the film I was unsure as too who would change who, fascinating highly watchable characters struggle to prevail against bad luck and to pull themselves out of the mire of despair and poverty, my kind of film. Again a remarkable film by a master film maker, completely at ease with breaking the conventions of traditional romance.
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