Friday, August 07, 2009

Mauvaise Foi (Bad Faith)

This 2006 film was the debut of Roschdy Zem as a director and was supposed to be a 100% comedy; but while filming the movie got its own “shape” and became more a drama than a comedy. Something very understandable as the film subject matter is very controversial.

The film tells the story of Clara (Cécile De France) and Ismaël (Rochdy Zem) that after four years being together, Clara gets pregnant. The twist is that Clara is Jewish and Ismaël is Muslim. Even when both are non-practicing, with the arrival of a child they cannot avoid the influence of family reactions and the role that religion will play in their relationship and the unborn child. Definitively not an easy situation in 2006, as well as before and after that year; but in my opinion the film handles the scaling personal conflicts quite well and the finale works wonders more for the comedy side than for the drama.

Great tech specs, good light –yet dramatic- storytelling, good directing skills and excellent performances by leads make this movie somehow unusual, as looks and feels “honest” and the reflection of “ordinary” lives even when its dealing with a quite difficult theme. This was what I liked more about this movie that engaged me beyond the always a pleasure of watching beautiful Cécile De France in the screen. Also remarkable was Jean-Pierre Cassel performance as Clara’s father.

The movie was nominated for Best First Work at the 2007 César Awards and Cécile De France won an Étoile d'Or for Best Actress at the 2007 awards, honors that are well deserved for a great debut and excellent performance.

This is a movie that I do recommend for those that enjoy very French cinema, want to watch a difficult theme presented with the innermost sensibility and a touch of French dry humor.


Watch trailer @ Movie On Companion

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