Marine Vacth, who plays and quite well, the lead in François Ozon's new movie YOUNG AND BEAUTIFUL (Jeune & jolie). M. Ozon handed me my favorite film of 2013, In the House, so I suppose one cannot expect a filmmaker as prolific as he to come up with something that good every time. (He's made 17 full-length films in as many years, plus myriad short movies.) Though it will not be my favorite film for 2014, still, this one is plenty good enough: thoughtful, stylish, intelligent, well-acted by all concerned and with a theme -- teenage prostitution -- that should certainly corral a portion of the arthouse crowd.
Lucas Prisor) and losing her virginity with barely so much as a goodbye. She evidently felt nothing pleasurable or otherwise -- as I suspect lots of young girls these days experience with their first time (and maybe always have). With the young, everything is rushed.
Johan Leysen (above); the rest are all just johns.
Charlotte Rampling, in a small but wonderful role that the actress fills to the brim. There is also a lovely, sad chapter around mid-way that explores Isabelle' relationship and love/sex life with a boy her own age (Laurent Delbecque, above). The difference in maturity between the genders, along with the characterization of the girl's inner life against the boy's outer has rarely been shown so clearly and pointedly.
Géraldine Pailhas, above, left) is divorced, but step-dad (the ever-present and always fine Frédéric Pierrot) is a decent guy, while (Fantin Ravat) is everything you'd want and expect in a kid brother -- and twice as adorable. Yes, this family has its problems, but because it is made up of relatively decent people, you can't look to it for anything approaching a full explanation of Isabelle's unusual behavior.
Sundance Selects/IFC Films and running 95 minutes -- opens here in the USA this Friday, April 25, in New York City at the IFC Center. I can't find it playing anywhere in the Los Angeles area -- that's surprising -- but as it will appear on VOD simultaneous with its theatrical release, you should be able to view it in practically all major markets across the USA.