Each day, a look back at three highlights of the 2021 edition of the Francophone film festival
The film : The True Family by Fabien Gorgeart
In any festival and Angoulême has taken the good habit (with Antoinette in the Cévennes, last year or in previous editions Boys and Guillaume, to the table ! Where My Zucchini Life), always arrives that moment when word of mouth panics and when a film becomes the one that should not be missed under any circumstances. Since its first screening, Wednesday evening, The True Family entered this merry whirlwind. And that is only fair. We discovered its director Fabien Gorgeart in 2017 with Diane has the shoulders where Clotilde Hesme was camping a young woman who was carrying the child of a couple of friends. The family is his favorite theme. But he really raises the bar with his second feature, this time featuring a foster family who, after six years with them, will see the little boy they welcomed at 18 months old go back to live with their child. biological father. With the inevitable heartbreak that this implies. Gorgeart here avoids all the traps set in his path. That of a film that would be limited to its sole subject where the societal would take precedence over cinema to the point of suffocating it. That of a subject so personal (his family was a foster family and he grew up with a kid from whom they too had to separate after several years) that it would have been difficult to transcend to tend towards a more universal. That of a Manichean story dividing his character into good guys and bad guys. The True Family is precisely the reverse: a little gem of writing both in the way in which its plot advances and in the psychology of its characters. Human, terribly human, with it all involves generosity and selfishness mixed together. Gorgeart explains nothing and we understand everything. He does not justify any position that can be found violent because he lets the characters go to the end of their logic. And its cast espouses this art of subtlety. Mélanie Thierry, impressive, is already in the running for a César nomination. The all too rare Lyes Salem excels in the role of her husband and Félix Moati finds in the role of the father of the child a character to whom he immediately brings a sympathy and an empathy which helps to make the subject matter more complex. The True Family enters through the front door in the list of favorites at Valois d’Or
The revelation: Lucie Zhang in The Olympics
In the new Jacques Audiard, Lucie Zhang is the one who kindles the romantic and romantic blaze that will follow. She plays Emilie, a young woman overflowing with energy who sleeps with her roommate, who falls for another young woman, fascinated by a camgirl. Three women and a man. Friends or lovers, often both in concert, embarked on a ballad on the Tender Map, like an endless roller coaster. Lucie Zhang’s liveliness, naturalness and intensity therefore set the tone. And The Olympics marks for her the culmination of a dream. That of a child who has always wanted to become an actress without knowing exactly how. That of a teenager who tried unsuccessfully to access castings before discovering that of Olympics on Instagram. That of a young woman who does not let go and crosses all obstacles while, 5 years younger than the role, the casting director Christel Baras has logically thought that it does not serve anything that she passes these tests. In this extrovert role at the antipodes of his reserved personality, the culmination of his dream offers magnificent moments of cinema. (in theaters November 3)
The scenario : A revision
Its producer, Quebecois Denise Robert, explained it on stage. A revision has managed to exist against all odds. No one wanted his subject. Too divisive. Too hot. Too connected to his time then. Written by Louis Godbout and Normand Corbeil, this first feature film by Catherine Therrien features a face to face between a teacher and one of his students. A double clash of cultures and generations between this philosophy teacher, disciple of Spinoza for whom reason must prevail over everything, and a Muslim student who will challenge him by quoting the Koran in her dissertation. Right in his boots and his logic, he gives him a bad mark. Straight in her boots and her beliefs, she asks the head teacher to have her grade revised. And if she wins her case, her teacher, already in the hot seat, will be fired … A revision makes it possible to understand that the questions which cross and divide French society shatter as well that of Quebec. The film talks about religion, communitarianism, the hunt for white men over 50, freedom of expression… with a sagacity never faulted. His clever scenario plays with all the preconceptions on these questions, multiplies the unexpected twists and turns without ever refusing the obstacles that he himself builds on his way but by going, like The True Family, well beyond the film with subjects by putting the spectator in front of his own contradictions. A work of goldsmith.