RESPIRE (2014)


A film by Mélanie Laurent

Cast: Joséphine Japy, Lou de Laâge, Isabelle Carré

English title: Breathe 

Charlie (Joséphine Japy) Is a 17 years old teenager who has doubt, is a loner and disillusion. On the other hand Sarah (Lou de Laâge) is beautiful, and confident when the two meet they become best of friends but when Sarah is tired of Charlie and look somewhere else for a new friend , the two embark in a dangerous path.

Everyone remember Inglorious Basterds the woman who got away at the beginning of the movie and later on has a movie theater and she is planning to kill Hitler well that is Melanie and she is an actress, writer, and director, She directed that on and wrote with 2 others writers this film. She has done a terrific job at that. Funny thing there is more women director in France than in the US. Anyway here is 2 teenagers who meet and are instant friends and have a great time together. For Sarah Charlie is her favorite friends. The story is the adaptation from the book of Anne-Sophie Brasme That Melanie had read one summer and decided to make it in a movie. Rarely there is a story of teenagers that is film with precision and intensity and dead on. Soon everyone is taken by charlie even charlie’s mother which you detect a little jalousie from Charlie. Soon after that the relationship becomes to dissolve. The 2 teenager does comes from a dysfunctional  family. Sarah’s mother a drunk. And Charlie’s father left her mother for an other woman. The relationship takes a turn to the worse and there is no going back. It is not far fetch because bullying is going on in high school yes even in France. Beautiful cinematography there reminds me how beautiful France is. The 2 actors has done an outstanding job and will leave you breathless with their performance. Joséphine Japy is perfect  in the role of Charlie. There’s a sense of restraint here that  delivers a typical introverted teenager, The relationship on-screen is extremely convincing from both actors. When you see the film you think that Melanie is extremely experience in directing in fact it is just her second one. She rely on the performance of her lead actress to keep the film moving and interesting. You become drawn to the life of Charlie and feels what she feels. Even with Sarah. That is why it is critical to have 2 great actress who has chemistry and do they ever. Respire is a great film and highly recommended.




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