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The Innocent (2023)

Opens on May 5

Director: Louis Garrel Run Time: 99 min. Rating: NR Release Year: 2022

Starring: Anouk Grinberg, Jean-Claude Pautot, Louis Garrel, Noémie Merlant, Roschdy Zem

Country: France
Language: French

About the film:

Official Selection of the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, and winner Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress (Noémie Merlant) at the 48th César Awards.

Part crime thriller, part family farce, Louis Garrel’s The Innocent (2023) shows with panache and pathos the dangerous lengths two men go, and the outlandish lies they tell, for the women they love.

Garrel stars as Abel, a museum educator and widower whose mother, Sylvie, marries Michel, one of her drama pupils in the local penitentiary. Once on parole Michel attempts to start a legitimate life for Sylvie’s sake but soon reverts to his old ways, with the suspicious Abel continually — and ineptly — spying on his step-father until roped into one of the ex-con’s schemes. Complicating matters is Clémence, the brazen coworker who convinces Abel to break out of his emotional and romantic shell by taking part in Michel’s planned heist.

Directing from his own screenplay (as co-written by Tanguy Viel and Naïla Guiguet), Garrel explores the comedic results of playacting’s intrusion into real life, as well as real life’s comedic tendency to transform us into what we never thought we could be, but perhaps always were.

About the filmmaker:

Louis Garrel is an acclaimed French actor, director, and screenwriter whose stories focus on relationship and love triangles. As the child of director Philip Garrel and actress Brigitte Sy, he first appeared in front of the camera at an early age – in his father’s film Les baisers de secours (1989), where he played his mother’s son. After graduating from the Conservatoire de Paris, he started appearing on screen regularly, including roles in Bernardo Bertolucci The Dreamers (2003) and in his father’s Regular Lovers (2005) – a role which earned him a César.

After crafting three short films, Garrel presented his feature directorial debut Two Friends (2015) at International Critics’ Week during the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. His other features are A Faithful Man (2018)The Crusade (2021), and The Innocent (2023). He has written, directed, and starred in all four films.

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