EXCLUSIVE – The tense opening scene of Giovanni Aloi’s first film looks back at the daily life of Operation Sentinel soldiers. In theaters September 22.
The excerpt begins with a close-up of an abandoned Vuitton bag near a trash can on level -1, platform 45 of the Bercy station, in Paris. The hubbub of travelers around the inert object is reassuring.
The camera gradually moves away. The next moment, we discover the tense face of Leo (Anthony Bajon), a young recruit with short hair, wearing a beret, his eyes fixed on this suspicious package, like a retriever.
Leo has just finished his military classes. For his first posting, he joined Operation Sentinel and roamed the streets of the capital, with nothing to do except to stay on the lookout for a possible terrorist threat… We are in 2015, just after the attacks. François Hollande launched the operation to fight terrorism. Nearly 10,000 soldiers are thus mobilized per day to lend a hand in large cities to the police in addition to the vigipirate plan.
For his first film, the young Italian director Giovanni Aloi follows from day to day a group of soldiers played by Anthony Bajon, Karim Leklou and Leïla Bekhti.
He got the idea for his film because he was “In Paris at the time of the 2015 attacks. In two days, the city has changed completely. I had never perceived such silence in the capital, such terror. Following the declaration of the state of emergency, the presence of soldiers on patrol in the streets, machine guns in hand, has become common. I watched them a lot doing nothing for hours. And this inactivity surprised me …“
Distributed by Capricci, the film hits theaters September 22.