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In the late 1950s in Châteauroux, France, Rachel, a modest office worker, meets Philippe, a brilliant young man born to a bourgeois family. This brief but passionate connection results in the birth of a daughter, Chantal. Philippe refuses to marry outside of his social class and Rachel has to raise their daughter alone. Regardless, Chantal is a great source of happiness for Rachel. She wishes for Philippe to legally acknowledge his daughter, which would give her his last name. A battle of more than ten years ensues, which will eventually break up all of their lives.Written by
Hugo Van Herpe
Sometimes I think it is only France that is producing one incredible film after another. I have a list of the great films that I have seen from this country ( the ones that I believe will last and be returned to as great works of art ) and this joins them. I watched it late at night and I could not sleep such was the impact.
To tell its story is to do it a disservice. It is the story of a life, and the people in that life; it questions and it probes, and it shows how far we all are from knowing those who affect us during this short span of living that we have. Many philosophical questions are asked, and the scene at the end of the film between Virginie Efira and Jehnny Beth is so precise, so clear that my head was spinning with its truth and sometimes dreadful clarity.
Society and us as individuals are pitilessly drawn into question, but all this would mean nothing without the direction of Catherine Corsini and the group of actors she has brought togethet. Efira is superb, and Jehnny Beth has a fierce force in her acting that I found overwhelming. I have admired Niels Schneider for quite a while, but here he surpasses himself. I am a poet myself, and one fine writer said about one of my poems that it was above criticism. So is this film. Like that elusive thing that we call truth it shifts and it changes, and perhaps truth in its essence is beyond us all, both in its certitude and its horror and its beauty. ' Un Amour Impossible ' cuts into the heart and the brain like a scalpel.
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