Dir. Judith Davis, 2018, 88 min.
With Judith Davis, Malik Zidi, Claire Dumas
In French with English subtitles
In this hilarious, whip-smart comedy, first-time director Judith Davis examines the frustrations of a generation that came of age after the fall of the Berlin Wall, hearing that the world was better before, yet that there are no more alternatives.
Davis stars as Angèle, a young urban planner in Paris who loses her job and moves back in with her diehard communist father. Angèle is an idealist: she refuses to give up the dream of revolution that her parents nearly realized in the protests of May 1968. But her activism comes at a high cost to her personal relationships: she has never forgiven her mother for giving up her political struggle, criticizes her sister for her bourgeois lifestyle, and has difficulty accepting her feelings for her suitor Simon, fearing they might be a distraction from the work of changing the world.
In presenting contemporary France through the eyes of this angry young woman, Davis deftly satirizes the culture of capitalism and bureaucracy. While the resulting picture of a society short on hope and rich in disappointment is chilling, Angèle’s uproarious, heartwarming trajectory suggests there are possibilities to be found in less dogmatic approaches.
“A comedy that restores faith in everything.” — Télérama
“This explosive theatrical comedy by Judith Davis transmits a tremendously beneficial energy to rethink the world.” — Les Fiches du Cinéma
“If the film sometimes betrays its theatrical origin and gives way at times to certain sociological categories, it is nonetheless convincing by its way of anchoring comedy in real issues.” — Le Monde
About the Presenter
Audrey Evrard is Assistant Professor of French in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures at Fordham University, where she teaches courses in French culture and cinema. Her research interests focus, more specifically, on the intersection of aesthetics, politics and ethics in Contemporary French documentary filmmaking.