Ariane's Thread

***1/2

Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Ariane's Thread
"What might have been a comic cliche with a cast of oddballs is so much more humane"

Mid life what? Crisis?

Isn't that what husbands suffer from when their boredom levels implode and same-old starts looking like same-older?

Copy picture

What about wives? Their man's slaving away in some office the other side of thrilling and the kids are furthering their education in the job seekers' circus.

It's Ariane's (Ariane Ascaride) birthday. She's baked a cake big enough for the whole family, even lit the candles, when calls and flowers start coming in to say, "Can't make it, sorry, love you!" Even her better/worse half has business commitments.

She feels mortified, rejected and tired of doing what is expected of her. She doesn't even blow out the candles before storming off and hitting the road.

This is Marseille. Where to go? Where not to go? She lets fate lead her and ends up at a shoreline bistro way beyond the safety of the suburbs where she meets and becomes friends with an eccentric bunch of ordinary misfits.

What might have been a comic cliche with a cast of oddballs is so much more humane. These people have problems and if attempting to solve them is sentimental or silly you're on the wrong track. They have dreams, which is good, because dreams can come true.

What about the talking tortoise? Yes, well... A bit of magic realism never hurt anyone.

Reviewed on: 10 Nov 2014
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A woman alone on her birthday heads for adventure in Marseille.

Director: Robert Guédiguian

Writer: Robert Gu├ędiguian, Serge Valletti

Starring: Ariane Ascaride, Jacques Boudet, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Anaïs Demoustier, Youssouf Djaoro, Adrien Jolivet, Gérard Meylan, Lola Naymark, Judith Magre

Year: 2014

Runtime: 92 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: France

Festivals:

French 2014

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