I want to love the Dardenne brothers. They’re Belgian and they grew up where my granny lived. They use those lovely Belgian expressions that prompt memories of the best of my childhood. I really ought to appreciate their movies.
Yes, they make great art and their films are deep and meaningful. It probably makes me just a little shallow that this small gem bored me, just a little.
Marion Cotillard is Sandra, who will lose her job if she can’t convince her colleagues to give up on getting a bonus. They all have blue collar jobs that are insecure.
So, she spends the weekend trying to beg them to vote for her to stay in her job. She’s depressed and has had time off work because of this.
Fabrizio Rongione is Sandra’s husband. He’s beleaguered and trying to cope with work, kids and a depressed wife who is overdoing her medication.
If you’ve watched anything else from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, you aren’t holding your breath for a happy ending.
Yes, it’s great art. But it’s a little too close to the bone to be enjoyable. Super direction, performances and settings. I longed for just a tiny bit of glitz. Or hope. Or joy.
The Stratford East Picturehouse audience appreciated it and stayed quiet. Perhaps I have seen so many movies that my attention span has shrunk.