Panorama | Spotlight on France | High School Outreach
When his older sister Sandrine (Ophelia Kolb) dies in a Parisian terrorist attack, David (an irresistible Vincent Lacoste), an aimless, twenty-something slacker, takes on caregiving duties for his now-orphaned, seven-year-old niece Amanda (fresh-faced Isaure Multrier). Going against the grain of expectation for post-tragedy movies, Mikhaël Hers’ honest and tender humanist drama is a full-bodied study in coping - one that courts cliché at every turn, but never once falls prey to it.
Recalling the work of French director Mia Hansen-Løve (Things to Come, VIFF 16), particularly Father of My Children, Amanda has a keen feel for the rhythms of modern urban life: the innumerable mundane interactions that make up each day, and the deep currents of feeling that they conceal. Filled with bucolic, sun-dappled textures and plein air compositions, it’s a film comprised largely of grace notes - small, cherishable interactions observed with a rare unguardedness, intelligence, and empathy. With co-writer Maud Ameline, Hers has crafted an extremely relevant contemporary story that, remarkably, bears no trace of self-importance. Amidst the aftershocks of senseless tragedy, life goes on.
"A quietly moving celebration of human resilience." - Stephen Dalton, Hollywood Reporter
Grand Prix, Best Screenplay, Tokyo 18