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Jumbo Image

An intoxicating amalgam of Amelie’s fantasticism and Cronenberg’s fetishism, Zoé Wittock’s Jumbo is a glorious testament to the fact that love is strange.

On this occasion, it’s Jeanne (Portrait of a Lady on Fire’s Noémie Merlant) who’s thrown headlong into infatuation. And for anyone who’s ever described a fledgling romance as a "roller coaster ride", socially awkward Jeanne can do you one better: she’s fallen for Jumbo, the newest tilt-a-whirl at the amusement park where she works. Basking in Jumbo’s kaleidoscopic lights and curling up in "his" hydraulics, she’s never felt so at ease. However, others, including her mother (Emmanuelle Bercot), take a dim view of their courtship.

Every bit as committed to her beguilingly weird scenario as Jeanne is to Jumbo, Wittock doesn’t so much play things straight as transcendent. The exhilaration that Merlant conveys is infectious and you can’t help but pull for these star-crossed lovers. Likewise, you can’t look away when Wittock bombastically stages one of the more surreal sexual fantasies to grace a screen in some time.

Director Icon Director
Zoé Wittock

Noémie Merlant, Emmanuelle Bercot, Sam Louwyck
Producer Anaïs Bertrand, Gilles Chanial, Annabella Nezri
Screenwriter Zoé Wittock
Cinematographer Thomas Buelens
Editor Thomas Fernandez
Music Thomas Roussel
Production Company Insolence Productions, Les Films Fauves, Kwassa Films
Source A-Z Films
France/Luxembourg/Belgium 2020 93 min. French with English subtitles
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Please note that VIFF 2020 online films can be viewed in British Columbia only.

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