Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Original title: La Vie Revee Des Anges
France, 1998. , Les Productions Bagheera, France 3 Cinéma, Canal+, Centre National de la Cinématographie, La Fondation Gan pour le Cinéma, Procirep. Screenplay by Pierre Chosson, Erick Zonca, Roger Bohbot, Artistic Collaboration by Virginie Wagon. Cinematography by Agnes Godard, Dominique Le Rigoleur. Produced by Francois Marquis. Music by Yann Tiersen. Production Design by Jimmy Vasteenkiste. Costume Design by Françoise Clavel. Film Editing by Yannick Kergoat.
Two very different women, one optimistic and carefree (Élodie Bouchez), the other self-loathing and pessimistic (Natacha Régnier), share a flat that they are house-sitting. The more positive-thinking lass needs to get herself a job and will do anything to get one (watching her audition for a bar by singing Madonna being a particularly fun example). She also soon learns that the family she is sitting for are not at home because they’ve been hospitalized following a bad accident, and so visits the family’s youngest member, a little girl, and grows an attachment to her. The sadder heroine of the story starts a volatile love affair with a rich club owner (Grégoire Colin) who treats her badly and for some reason she likes it. The results in both cases are heartbreaking to say the least. The film was one of the highest critically rated films of 1998, and deservedly so, because the bravery it took to both produce and perform in it pay off extremely well, though be warned it is not easy to watch.
Cannes Film Festival Award: Best Actress (Elodie Bouchez, Natacha Regnier)
European Film Awards: Best European Actress (Elodie Bouchez, Natacha Regnier); European Discovery
Nomination: Best European Film
Toronto International Film Festival: 1998