Monday, May 29, 2017

L'Avenir (Things to Come) (2016)

Director: Mia Hansen-Love
Writer: Mia Hansen-Love
DOP: Denis Lenoir
Cast: Isabelle Huppert, Andre Marcon, Roman Kolinka
Language: French

A philosophy teacher (Isabelle Huppert) soldiers through the death of her mother, getting fired from her job, and dealing with a husband who is cheating on her.

Most of the film industries of the World can be defined by the iconic actors that they produce and French film industry must be the only one where these iconic positions are held by the female gender. Am talking about the duo of Juliette Binoche and Isabelle Huppert. Some might point out Vincent Cassel but his popularity is to do more with his work in Hollywood films rather than the French ones even though he has been in many good ones in his his native language as well. I can't really choose between the two but  I have seen Binoche appearing in films directed by different directors while most of the Huppert films that I have seen have been directed by Michael Haneke who is probably the greatest director that is currently going.

Mia Hansen-Love's breakout film, Eden, was an excellent one that was based mostly of her brother's career as a DJ. 'Things to Come' is also another solid outing. While the synopsis suggests that it is probably going to be a sob story, it is anything but. Huppert takes the various setbacks in her life in her stride and is constantly moving forward. With her mother's death, her divorce and her teenage kids moving out of the house, she finds herself alone all of a sudden even though it affords her a great deal of freedom. She is also taken aback by the way her favorite student sees her as not much different from the bourgeoisie that he despises. Like most French films, nothing much happens in terms of plot development but is a tremendous watch. Like the lead character in it, the camera is always on the move and is not bogged down by the events.  One would think that with her being a Philosophy teacher, there would be a great deal of Philosophy being talked about. Director does not take it as a license for it being a Philosophy talk like how Richard Linklater's 'Before Trilogy' was (Am a great fan of those as well). Things to Come is a great watch with a great central performance from Huppert in a role that is not very intense like 'Piano Teacher' was.

Rating: 4/5