The Father, Promising Young Woman, Sons of Philadelphia… The films to see or avoid this week at the cinema


A week after the theaters reopened, the waltz of French productions continues and the first Oscar-winning films hit theaters. What should you see in the cinema? The editorial selection of the Figaro.

To have

The Father , a drama by Florian Zeller, 1h38

By adapting his play to the screen, Florian Zeller reveals himself to be a sensitive, fair and clever director. He enlisted the services of playwright Christopher Hampton and director Yorgos Lanthimos, which is modest and clever. It aligns the cinematographic finds, actors putting themselves in the shoes of different protagonists, slight variations of scenery. We are in a sick, weakened brain. Alzheimer’s is embodied in this retiree with loose memories who whistles in his kitchen, before stopping dead. Where is he? It is a vertigo filmed with elegance. The end grips the heart, plunges into the depths of the human soul, overflows with tenderness and cruelty. The camera leaves the room, rises towards the foliage of the trees, moves away towards who knows what future. Tea Father is served by actors with sovereign talent, Anthony Hopkins poor King Lear in pajamas, Olivia Colman upset by the inconsistencies of her father, real bee against the glass, Olivia Williams of whom he wonders what is the role, exactly. There is no risk of forgetting them. Zeller, alas, is going to have a problem: his first film is already his best. Hover. IN

Balloon , a drama by Pema Tseden, 1h42

If Pema Tseden films the harsh daily life of peasants on the mountainous plateaus of Tibet, he manages above all to paint magnificent female portraits. Here, it is the women who emancipate themselves, who make the society evolve, even if all this does not go without grinding of teeth, and sometimes even a certain violence. By delicately blending these ethnographic elements with moral and ethical dilemmas that shed light on the Buddhist faith of the Tibetan people, Balloon asserts itself primarily as a Tibetan feminist fable, roundly criticizing the one-child policy promulgated by China between 1979 and 2015. Whether it is the heroine, Drolkar, pregnant with a fourth child, who seeks an abortion to avoid the wrath of Chinese law, or her sister, they are the ones who advance the plot. The naturalist cinema of Tseden (Jinpa, A Tibetan tale, 2018) accompanies this emancipation while anchoring it in an earthly harshness that contrasts with the way in which he films the immense skies above the heads of the protagonists. One would believe his skies immutable… Sometimes, however, they are crossed by a red balloon dropped from the hand of a child. Like the fragile hope of future liberation. OD

You can see

Promising Young Woman , a thriller by Emerald Fenell, 1h48

Mulligan plays Cassie, 30, who still lives with her parents. She quit medical school and works in a cafe. With her different varnish on each finger and her blonde braids, she does not have the profile of a calculating vamp. At nightfall, however, she scours bars and clubs to trap men. She feigns drunkenness before suddenly sobering up, letting the pig flounder in her shame. The maneuver ends with a moral lesson (” You woke me up before you put a finger on me, that’s cute. Others rape me when I’m asleep “). Until the day she learns that one of her former college friends is going to marry a swimsuit model. Unpleasant memories give his hunt a definite purpose. Director Emerald Fennell, author of horror novels in his spare time, knows how to raise the tension and spice up her post #MeToo revenge film.Promising Young Womancould resemble the first Hollywood film of Virginie Despentes, until the denouement, far-fetched and less convincing by its excess of violence. ES

If the wind drops , a drama by Nora Martirosyan, 1 h 40

A Frenchman, international auditor (Grégoire Colin), arrives in “a small self-proclaimed republic of the Caucasus»To assess his airport project. This territory is Haut-Karabakh, at the heart of the 2020 war between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In contact with the population, the newcomer will open up to his new environment, in the grip of strong political and social tensions. A first film in the form of an interesting fable but little embodied. ES

To avoid

Sons of Philadelphia , a drama by Jérémie Guez, 1h30

Mourning for 30 years by the death of his sister, Michael sees his exuberant cousin and adopted brother Peter become persona non grata for the Italian Mafia in Philadelphia. This thriller by French filmmaker Jérémie Guez is a sincere tribute to the black films of the 1970s, but the outcome of this disenchantment between two cousins ​​who are boxing enthusiasts and mafioso, camped by the monolithic Matthias Schoenaerts, who multiplies uninspired projects, and Joel Kinnaman, is not in doubt. CJ

Towards the battle , a drama by Aurélien Vernhes-Lermusiaux, 1 h 30

Around 1860, a French photographer arrived in Mexico to take pictures of the colonial war. Lost, the hero is unable to take the slightest shot. This first film, which aims to be an ambitious reflection on the invention of the war photo essay and fake news, quickly gets bogged down in a solid boredom. It is not Werner Herzog who wills. OD

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