LA TÊTE HAUTE (2015)
A film by Emmanuelle Bercot
Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Benoît Magimel, Sara Forestier English title: Standing tall.
Here is a great film by Emmanuelle Bercot, the film has open the Cannes Film Festival last week , the festival last 3 weeks as usual. she avoided the clichés as she digs into deep problems of psychological and social conditions of the youths today. Don’t look for an impressive hollywood story with cliché there is none here. by the way it is the first female-directed film to open the Cannes film festival since A Man in Love by Diane Kurys 30 years ago.
The gruelling story of Malony, an adolescent who get shuffle trough the French administration is appalling and deeply moving. And no you will not get bored. Newcomer Rod Paradot who has been spotted by a casting director outside of his high school carrie the film just fine and has done an outstanding acting job here , it is a draining and exhausting role. Catherine Deneuve who I saw walking her dog at St. Sulpice talking to a friend of hers is a powerhouse here, she plays a judge who refuses to give up on the kid who is violent has a lot of rage with anger who turn very quickly into a crying baby calling for his mother. The kid is destroying himself and those who are around him. His mother almost gave up on him but has problem of her own, she is trying to get rid of the drug problem that she has and do not know what to do with her son anymore. Malony is getting in and out of reform school like he is changing a pair of pants. He loves to steal cars and party until the dawn. Yann (Benoît Magimel) who is terrific here try to calm the kid down and help him as much as he can. There is a twist here but I am not revealing it. Actually there is two. The relationship with Tess, the daughter of a reform school teacher, that gradually starts to turn things around for the troubled teenager. The French administration doe not get to the root of the problem which Bercot shows here and down not drawn any neat conclusion. A terrific film here not to be missed.