Simon (Kacey Mottet Klein) lives with his older sister Louise (Léa Seydoux, Farewell My Queen) in low-income housing in the valley below a luxury ski resort in Switzerland’s Foreign-language Oscar submission written and directed by Ursula Meier. With his sister drifting in and out of both jobs and relationships, twelve-year-old Simon takes on the responsibility of providing for the two of them. Every day he takes the lift up to the opulent winter paradise to steal ski equipment from rich tourists for resale to the local kids down in the valley. He is able to keep their little family afloat with his small-time hustles and his sister is thankful for the money he brings in. But, when Simon partners with a crooked British seasonal worker, he begins to lose his boundaries, affecting his relationship with his sister and plummeting him into dangerous territory. Sister premiered at the 2012 Berlin Film Festival where it won the Silver Bear—the first of several awards for which it has either been nominated or won. With styles and themes akin to the works of the Dardenne brothers…[Meier] is indeed a director of significant talent, her latest title a Swiss sister to the Belgian The Kid With a Bike.—Nicholas Bell, ioncinema.com It’s an often touching, sometimes funny story about a pair of castaways and the moral awakening that brings them together and shows Ms. Meier under the influence of the Belgian filmmaking brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. (Even Sister, the English-language title of the movie, which was originally called L’Enfant d’en Haut or The Child From Above, evokes Dardenne films like L’Enfant and The Son) Gracefully, she oscillates between visual, narrative and real-world extremes—the big and the little, the rich and the poor, the grand and the base—to build a story that is simultaneously personal and political, intimate and bigger than any one life.—Manohla Dargis, New York Times. In English and French with English subtitles. Unrated. 97 minutes.
Tickets ($8) can be purchased online at http://miff.org/
The Maine International Film Festival’s MIFF in the Morning is a winter film series featuring a diverse selection of American independent and international documentary and narrative films. Screenings are on designated Saturday and Sunday mornings in January, February and March at Railroad Square Cinema in Waterville. For more information call 207-873-4021.
MIFF in the Morning is presented by Maine Film Center, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to enrich, educate, and entertain the community through film and art. Maine Film Center also presents the Maine International Film Festival (MIFF) in July and recently announced its purchase of Railroad Square Cinema.