Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts) gets a job as a bouncer in Antibes and helps Stéphanie (Marion Cotillard) home one drunken night; the next time they meet, her life has changed dramatically. A romantic drama that maintains a very grounded and realistic tone in its look and story about a man and a woman who provide comfort for each other in difficult moments. Far from arresting at all times, but dark and moving, with an ending that is upbeat without getting sentimental about it. Gripping performances by the two leads as people who have to use all the strength they have, mentally and physically, to pull through their crises.
2012-France-Belgium. 122 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Jacques Audiard, Martine Cassinelli, Pascal Caucheteux. Directed by Jacques Audiard. Screenplay: Jacques Audiard, Thomas Bidegain. Short Stories: Craig Davidson. Cinematography: Stéphane Fontaine. Music: Alexandre Desplat. Cast: Marion Cotillard (Stéphanie), Matthias Schoenaerts (Ali), Armand Verdure (Sam), Céline Sallette, Corinne Masiero, Bouli Lanners.
Trivia: Original title: De rouille et d’os.
Last word: “After ‘A Prophet’, I wanted to have a female character, to tell a love story. When I read Craig Davidson’s stories, there wasn’t one. We cobbled a love story onto [his] short stories. We took two [separate] stories and made a love story. That said, what was in the short stories were the orcas, Marine Land, boxing, the child – things like that. I wouldn’t have been able to come up with that, that was something that the stories gave us.” (Audiard, Interview Magazine)