Lea Seydoux as a TV presenter sitting at a desk in France film


Bruno Dumont | France | 2021

Rating: M violence, offensive language & content that may disturb Runtime: 133 minutes

Director: Bruno Dumont
Producers: Rachid Bouchareb,
  Jean Bréhat, Muriel Merlin
Screenplay: Bruno Dumont
Cinematography: David Chambille
Editor: Nicolas Bier
Music: Christophe
Léa Seydoux (France de Meurs)
Blanche Gardin (Lou)
Benjamin Biolay (Fred de Meurs)
Emanuele Arioli (Charles Castro)
Juliane Köhler (Mme Arpel)
Gaëtan Amiel (Joseph de Meurs)
Jawad Zemmar (Baptiste)

It’s a peculiarly 21st century phenomenon that most people will be more familiar with the viral internet meme this film generated (star Léa Seydoux giving a thumbs up to camera) than the film itself. Ironically it’s the virality of both traditional and social media that is in the spotlight in this film, a satire that is both comic and serious from one of France’s leading contemporary directors, Bruno Dumont (L’Humanité, Camille Claudel 1915, Slack Bay).

Léa Seydoux plays a beloved TV journalist called France (a wink to the audience already) who is as much about making the news as she is about reporting it and in a comic opening scene, faking it. However when a real life incident shatters her celebrity status and threatens a negative slant to how she is perceived, her life suddenly changes. Seydoux gives a great performance, dressed in impeccable haute couture suits while capturing the vacuousness of celebrity culture and the rapid news cycle which favours headlines over in-depth journalism. Her ready smile for a selfie hides deep insecurity and melancholy and it’s this tightrope she walks which makes the film so watchable.

Perhaps the most ringing endorsement to give the film is that it was named by the Pope of Trash, John Waters, as one of his Top 10 films of 2021, commenting “This psychological study of a fictitious popular female newscaster may start out conventionally, but the assured director’s long pauses and cruel plot twists quickly turn a quasi attack on the media and its ravenous consumers into a searing critique of both the tedium and the emotional risk of living in the public eye.”

Screened in cooperation with Institut Français and the Embassy of France


Aug 28 2023


6:15 pm - 8:30 pm