Director and co-writer Catherine Corsini's somber dissection of co-dependence masquerading as friendship is a haunting psychological drama whose disturbing implications linger long after it's over.
College student Louise (Pascale Bussieres) is forced to bask in the reflected glory of her childhood friend, Nathalie (Emmanuelle Beart), for whom she feels both admiration and jealousy. Everything seems to come easily to theater major Nathalie, who radiates star quality and attracts more beaux than she knows what to do with. Louise deals with her unresolved feelings by cutting Nathalie out of her life, and as the years passed the increasingly discontented Louise settles for marriage to a dentist while Nathalie goes on to a triumphant stage career and finds a soul-mate in her handsome director, Matthias (Dani Levy). When Louise sees Nathalie in a touring production, her repressed emotions flood back. Louise arranges to hang out with the cast and rearranges her schedule so she can just happen to pop up when Nathalie is performing. For her part, Nathalie is content to let Louise resume her old role of admirer. But while Nathalie enjoys being adored, she hates being controlled. Knowing that it will enrage Matthias, Louise encourages Nathalie to accept the role of Lulu for another director and then, having driven a wedge between the happy couple, steps up her attentions and draws Nathalie into a lesbian affair. The relationship doesn't really satisfy Nathalie, who begins to question Louise's devotion. When Nathalie backs out of a vacation get-away, Louise settles for revenge, sacrificing her own marriage to seduce the discarded Matthias. If she can't have Nathalie, she'll make her suffer; Nathalie’s pain will be a constant reminder of Louise’s presence in her life.
This supremely creepy melodrama suggests that love without subjugation will never satisfy those who equate love with possession, and stars Bussieres and Beart expressing the shifting relationship between the women with such subtlety that the viewer is kept off balance until the film's final moments.
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- Released: 2001
- Rating: NR
- Review: Director and co-writer Catherine Corsini's somber dissection of co-dependence masquerading as friendship is a haunting psychological drama whose disturbing implications linger long after it's over. College student Louise (Pascale Bussieres) is forced t… (more)