Emotional character study ‘The Truth’ opens at the Ross this Friday – Daily Nebraskan

Posted: August 20, 2020 at 6:06 pm

With the Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center reopening this Friday, Hirokazu Koreedas The Truth will be one of the first films to play on the theaters screens since its closure in March.

The French film, which stars Oscar nominees Catherine Deneuve and Ethan Hawke, as well as Oscar winner Juliette Binoche, tells the story of a reunion between a mother and daughter who have a rocky relationship to say the least.

The mother in this story, Fabienne (Deneuve), is an acclaimed French actress who is celebrating the recent and successful release of her autobiography. Lumir (Binoche), Fabiennes daughter, travels from the United States with her husband and daughter to visit her mother at her home in France. When Lumir arrives, tensions between her and her mother are high.

Fabienne disapproves of Lumirs husband Hank (Hawke), who is also an actor but has mostly been relegated to small TV roles and is preoccupied with her book and rehearsing lines for her latest film. Lumir takes the opportunity to read through her mothers autobiography, discovering that a majority of the book is falsified, depicting Fabienne as a present and supportive mother, when in reality she was distant and contributed very little to Lumirs upbringing.

Over the course of the film, Fabienne and Lumir are forced to confront their issues with one another. Lumir holds a bit of resentment toward her mother, whom she sees as fame-obsessed and selfish, while Fabienne sees her daughter as someone who never lived up to her potential. There are many scenes in the film of these two perspectives clashing. Fabienne and Lumir verbally spar with one another over a multitude of things, such as Lumirs job as a scriptwriter. The Characters evolve and the pair grow to understand one another more, which eventually leads to some semblance of forgiveness and a healthy relationship.

The narrative backdrop for these events is the aforementioned new film Fabienne is shooting. Though Fabienne is traditionally a dramatic actress that avoids genre films, her new movie delves into the realm of science fiction. It centers around a mother who never ages and watches her child grow up while she stays the same. This comes at a price, however, as the mother is only allowed to visit her child once every seven years. The mother in the film is played by a young up-and-coming actress, while Fabienne takes on the role of the elderly depiction of the child.

The plot of Fabiennes film serves to hold a mirror up to the mother/daughter relationship between Fabienne and Lumir. Just as Fabienne wasnt around for much of Lumirs life, the mother in the film barely sees her daughter. Additionally, the immortality of the mother is representative of Fabiennes fame and prominence as an actress. Through playing the role of the daughter in this film, Fabienne begins to see Lumirs perspective. She is able to gain a better understanding of why her relationship with Lumir is so strained, and she grows as a result of that.

There are a lot of heavy emotions at play in The Truth, and each of the performers in the film are fantastic at bringing them to life. Deneuve and Binoche have excellent chemistry as Fabienne and Lumir and play off each other extremely well. Their believable performances are a large part of why these characters work so well in the film. They legitimately feel like mother and daughter, which makes the emotional intricacies of their relationship feel all the more genuine.

Additionally, Hawke gives a solid performance as Lumirs husband, Hank. The characters arc in the film sees him reflecting upon both his career as an actor and his role as a father. He sees how Fabiennes career affected her relationship with Lumir, and he doesnt want the same to happen between himself and his daughter. He undergoes a lot of personal growth in the film, and Hawke is able to portray that very well.

The Truth is an interesting character study and analysis of how ones career can affect ones family. It showcases the idea that prioritizing work over family can lead to resentment and guilt. The film explores this idea through several perspectives, namely the relationship between Lumir and Fabienne, the mother and daughter in Fabiennes film, as well as Hank and his daughter. Its an emotional story, held up by stellar performances from the cast, which makes it a film that is certainly worth a watch.

The Truth is by no means a groundbreaking movie that everyone needs to rush out to see or eagerly search streaming services for, but its still a solidly entertaining and well-crafted film that deserves attention.


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Emotional character study 'The Truth' opens at the Ross this Friday - Daily Nebraskan

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