Anything For Her

Anything For Her


Reviewed by: Emma Slawinski

Julien is married to a wife he adores, Lisa, and they have a young son together. When Lisa is imprisoned for a crime she did not commit, Julien can think only of how to get her out, and will stop at nothing to be reunited with her.

From when he learns that an appeal will not be granted, Julien’s life becomes a tug of war between his own choices and chance occurrences that threaten constantly to topple him. Even if you’ve never planned a jailbreak, somehow it’s easy to relate: it’s like one of those terrible obstacle dreams that you wake from in a cold sweat, in which you feel your powerlessness acutely.

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Julien’s scheme becomes increasingly complex and dangerous, rocked by setbacks that threaten his other relationships and his safety. The constant reversals of fortune could have been contrived, but Cavaye handles them masterfully. The result is tense and unpredictable – a film that leaves you short of breath, pulse racing.

A powerful and gripping thriller, it’s also a passionate love story. Julien’s devotion to Lisa is palpable. In one of their prison meetings she tells him, out of the blue, that he’s handsome, and his look of delight and sadness is devastating. Kruger and Lindon dazzle in their scenes together, and Lisa’s transition from vital young woman to prisoner is startling, but it’s Lindon who is given most room to impress. Cavaye’s screenplay avoids Julien’s ungainly transformation into an action hero, presenting him as an everyman who draws on resources he had never needed before, and tries to pull off the unthinkable.

Anything For Her is everything you could ask of a summer thriller – a cracking, nail-biting story bound up with a searing love-affair, and some very fine performances, styled in elegantly French fashion.

Reviewed on: 04 Jun 2009
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When Julien's wife is imprisoned and all legal means fail her, he becomes determined to save her at any cost.
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Jennie Kermode ****1/2

Director: Fred Cavayé

Writer: Fred Cavayé

Starring: Vincent Lindon, Diane Kruger, Lancelot Roch, Olivier Marchal, Hammou Graïa, Liliane Rovère, Olivier Perrier

Year: 2008

Runtime: 96 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: France


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