Director: Martin Provost
Cast: Catherine Frot, Catherine Denueve, Olivier Gourmet
Duration: 117 mins
Country of Origin: France
Mild themes and coarse language
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“A bittersweet delight written to order for two consummate performers who inhabit their diametrically opposed characters with satisfying élan. Frot and Deneuve work subtle wonders. This tale of a jovially disruptive stab at redemption late in the game of life shows every sign of being another hit-in-waiting for writer-director Martin Provost.”
Lisa Nesselson, SCREEN INTERNATIONAL
“Funny, sad and moving – a richly human crowd pleaser about friendship, forgiveness and rolling with the punches. The two actresses make terrific foils, and Deneuve delivers her best performance in recent memory.”
Ben Croll, INDIEWIRE
The much-anticipated new film from Cesar-winning writer/director Martin Provost (Séraphine), THE MIDWIFE marks the remarkable pairing of two of French cinema’s most beloved stars, Catherine Deneuve and Catherine Frot.
Gifted midwife Claire (Frot) has led a quiet, focused life, dedicated to her profession and to the raising of her son as a single mother. But change is in the air; the local community maternity ward where she has worked for decades is to be closed, and though she has a job offer from a larger corporate clinic, struggles to reconcile their more efficiency-driven methods with her own.
In the midst of this upheaval, she receives a call from Béatrice (Deneuve), the extravagant mistress of her deceased father, who wants to meet again, thirty years after having disappeared without a trace. Béatrice is a true free-spirit – loud, vivacious, and seemingly without guilt. Claire agrees to meet, but is decidedly less than enthusiastic about delving into the secrets of the past, let alone prepared to respond to a plea for help…
Provost has made a name for himself with indelible portraits of women, but reaches new heights with this exquisite depiction of feminine strengths and frailties. THE MIDWIFE memorably – and movingly – questions the value of change, but also whether steak, pommes frites and red wine can really be considered a healthy lunch.
2017 Alliance Française French Film Festival
Touring nationally, 7 Mar-23 Apr
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