The Olympics **
by Jacques Audiard
French film, 1 h 46
Emilie loves Camille, her roommate, who is attracted to Nora, herself troubled by Amber. Three girls, a boy, and a romantic crossover shot in the shadow of the towers of the 13th arrondissement of Paris in the district known as the Olympiades. Thus summarized, the new film by Jacques Audiard has all the paces of a marivaudage and may surprise on the part of a filmmaker who has accustomed us since Watch the men fall to dark and often violent films. This is without counting on its ability to renew its cinema and to open up to new collaborations. In this case that of the directors, Céline Sciamma and Léa Myssius, co-screenwriters of the film and who embody the new generation of French cinema.
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Adapted from three short stories by Adrian Tomine, an American comic book author featuring the characters of young New Yorkers a little lost, the story transposed to Paris, aims to draw an ultra-contemporary portrait of today’s youth ‘hui. With its diversity of origin, its questions about the world of work, success, romantic relationships or sexual orientation.
Émilie, a brilliant student, vegetates in odd jobs to thwart the success plans of her Chinese family; Camille, a young teacher already worn out by national education, tries a retraining in real estate, while Nora, who comes from Bordeaux weighed down from a painful past, is harassed by students who confuse her with Amber, a cam-girl exposing her body on the Internet to pay her bills.
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Between these four thirties, sometimes friends, sometimes lovers, the desire circulates with the lightness of those who prefer not to think about the future, even if it means hurting the other without wanting to. Jacques Audiard’s fluid camera is in tune with these amorous disorders with great elegance. The black and white and the very graphic decor of this district of Paris give it a universal character, navigating between memories of the new wave and hypermodernity. It is a pity that the desire to concentrate on it all the themes that agitate today’s society gives this generational column an overly programmatic function.