PRODS Frédéric Jouve, Gabriele Kranzelbinder
SCR Rebecca Zlotowski, Gaëlle Macé
CAM Georges Lechaptois
ED Julien Lacheray
PROD DES Antoine Platteau
PROD CO Les Films Velvet / France 3 Cinéma / Rhône-Alpes Cinéma / KGP Kranzelbinder Gabriele Productions
Fast-rising French star Léa Seydoux (also to be seen in Cannes winner Blue is the Warmest Colour) reunites with Belle Épine director Rebecca Zlotowski for this intense love triangle played out in and around a nuclear power plant.
Gary (Tahar Rahim, A Prophet and The Past) arrives at the plant looking to score some danger pay. He gets it, finding maintenance work close to the reactor itself—and inevitably exposing himself to low levels of radiation. (“It’s like sunburn,” he rationalizes.) But the real danger comes in the form of his attraction to Karole (Sedoux), who also works at the plant, alongside her fiancé Toni (Denis Menochet—who played Sedoux’s father, the farmer harbouring Jews under his floorboards in the memorable first scene of Inglourious Basterds).
Shooting in a real, billion-dollar Austrian plant that was completed shortly before that country voted to ban nuclear power in a national referendum, Zlotowski is careful to ground her melodrama in the everyday operations of this clinical, antiseptic environment. She draws a stark contrast between this industrial space and the lush countryside that surrounds it, where the tight-knit workers can let their hair down and enjoy themselves—but she’s also alert to the wider complexities and ironies implicit in this set up, and especially the ramifications of Gary and Karole’s illicit love affair.
“So intense it’s practically radioactive… Engrossing, superbly acted.”—Scott Foundas, Variety