Fifth about The Seventh

Maelström (2000)

Maelström: when the narrator of a film is a soon-to-be-dead talking fish, it’s obvious it will be a somewhat wild ride. But that’s pretty much the extent of the wildness in this Denis Villeneuve’s drama; the protagonist is a poor rich girl living a pretty loose life and she is hard to sympathize with, in particular as her travails evolve. Marie-Josée Croze plays well the protagonist, a troubled young woman; there is a certain hardness and coldness to her that makes a lot of sense. Stephanie Morgenstern, as her best friend and constant advisor, and Jean-Nicolas Verreault, as a young man she sees herself connected to, are both efficient in their roles. Aesthetically, the film is undoubtedly bold and different (evidence number one: the aforementioned talking fish), with cinematographer André Turpin shooting the film moodily and close to the action, and the counter-intuitive use of cheery music by Charles Aznavour, among others.

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