A WOMAN’S LIFE
FRANCE, BELGIUM • DRAMA • 119 MINS • 2015 • G
Directed by: STÉPHANE BRIZÉ
Starring: Judith Chemla, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Yolande Moreau, Swann Arlaud
Likened to a series of impressionist paintings on screen, this beautifully composed and insightful depiction of the influential Guy de Maupassant’s first novel constructs a dazzling mosaic of the trials and tribulations spanning 27 years in the life of Jeanne (Judith Chemla, Camille Rewinds, AF FFF13).
Optimistic and bright-eyed, 20-year-old Jeanne is a noblewoman living in Normandy in 1819. When the handsome Viscount Julien de Lamare (Swann Arlaud) asks for her hand in marriage, she fantasises that the years to follow will be brimming with dreamy afternoons of flower beds bathed in dappled sunlight. Yet fate holds a very different destiny for this woman’s life. Betrayed by her husband, her son, and in many ways, her own idyllic youth, we follow Jeanne through the passing of time, as her dreams turn to disillusionments.
A revelation in the title role, Chemla effortlessly encapsulates an expansive range of emotions and character developments while exceptional camera work, production design and costumes recreate every detail of Jeanne’s world with a majesty that will undoubtedly resonate with male and female audiences alike.
French with English subtitles