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Following the 2016 suicide of her mother, the writer Carole Achache, filmmaker Mona Achache (THE HEDGEHOG) decided to tell Carole's story, as well as the story of the complicated mother-daughter relationships across three generations of her family. The film opens as a straightforward documentary, with the filmmaker going through her mother's voluminous boxes of papers and photos, an archive which also includes unsorted boxes belonging to her grandmother, editor and writer Monique Lange. Then actress Marion Cotillard arrives at the apartment and, following a brief exchange with Mona, undresses and dons Carole's clothes, a wig and colored contact lenses. What follows is a remarkable hybrid documentary/psychodrama, a metanarrative telling of Carole's life story, actively directed by her daughter and portrayed by Cotillard. Carole's story is harrowing and unforgettable: the daughter of a literary doyenne who counted many of mid-20th-century France's leading intellectual lights among her clients and coterie — some of whom would go on to abuse young Carole — became swept up as a teenager in the revolutionary fervor of May 1968, and then spent a lost, hedonistic decade in Paris and New York marked by heavy drug use and occasional prostitution. With the 1980s came a husband, children, a steady job and success as a writer, but personal demons and haunting traumas never left her. Official Selection, 2023 AFI FEST and Cannes film festivals. DIR/SCR Mona Achache; PROD Yaël Fogiel, Laetitia Gonzalez. France/Belgium, 2023, color, 95 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

No AFI Member passes accepted.

95 Minutes
Biography, drama

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