Les Intranquilles: Leïla Bekhti and Damien Bonnard overwhelm us with emotion (review)

Les Intranquilles: Leïla Bekhti and Damien Bonnard overwhelm us with emotion (review)

Joachim Lafosse’s film, noticed during the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, will be broadcast this evening on France 5.

Take out the tissues before turning on the TV tonight! While M6 will offer Cocoone of Pixar’s most moving animated filmsthe fifth channel will program The Intranquillesby Joachim Lafosse.

Here is our review, initially published when it was discovered in Cannes, in May 2021.

Five years later The couple’s economy presented at the Directors’ Fortnight, here is Joachim Lafosse back in Cannes for his first steps in the competition. The Intranquilles arises after a delicate moment in his career: the failure of his adaptation of the novel by Laurent Mauvignier, Continue with a critical and public failure without appeal. And the discovery of the film reminds us how a filmmaker’s career is nothing but a permanent succession of ups and downs.

The Intranquilles tells a love story against all odds, the one that unites Leila and Damien, despite the latter’s bipolarity, subject to uncontrollable and uncontrolled crises. The risk is great in this type of enterprise of getting stuck in the film on the subject (mental illness and its collateral damage for those around them) coupled with a demonstration of strength by the actor embodying the repeated tantrums. Or precisely the opposite of what is The Intranquilles.

Built in close collaboration with its two main performers, the film totally transcends its subject. Firstly through Damien Bonnard’s interpretation of finesse and contrasts, never in demonstration, in stuttering compared to what the scenes tell and always in an incredibly complicit pas de deux with Leïla Bekhti in tune. Then because illness is never the heart of the film but an obstacle to going in circles so that this couple can live fully and serenely this love which unites them and their child (remarkably interpreted by Gabriel Merz Chammah, son of Lolita Chammah… and grandson of Isabelle Huppert). A devouring enemy who, day after day, despite the violence it brings, will only strengthen this unwavering bond that unites them.


The Intranquilles you are overcome with emotion(s) precisely because it does not sacrifice any tearfulness. Because we see him immersed in Damien’s head, overwhelmed by what he experiences like and in that of Leïla, refusing to abandon the ship despite the successive storms. The competition of this 2021 Cannes festival ends on a strong note. And we say to ourselves that two years after having presented here Wretched by Ladj Ly, crowned with a Jury Prize, Damien Bonnard would make a great winner of the interpretation prize.

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