Released this week in dark rooms, the drama “Saint Omer”, directed by Alice Diop, conquered the French press present on AlloCiné.
The first feature film by Alice Diop, Saint Omer is freely inspired by a news item from 2013: the Fabienne Kabou case, in which a mother was convicted of infanticide. Selected to represent France at the 2023 Oscars, the film (also awarded at Venice and other festivals) was very well received by the French press, since its average is 4.2/5 (and this for 33 critics).
Saint Omer by Alice Diop
With Kayije Kagame, Guslagie Malanda, Valérie Dréville…
What is it about ? Rama, a young novelist, attends the trial of Laurence Coly at the Assize Court of Saint-Omer. The latter is accused of having killed her fifteen-month-old daughter by abandoning her at the rising tide on a beach in northern France. But during the trial, the word of the accused, listening to the testimonies make Rama’s certainties waver and question our judgement.
WHAT DOES THE PRESS THINK?
According to Bande à part:
“A conductor capturing the right note of each soloist and each formal and narrative thread, in the service of her subject, Alice Diop here achieves a very high level of humanist and political cinema.” (Olivier Pelisson) 5/5
According to The Cross:
“A powerful and visceral film, which haunts the viewer for a long time, and makes us wonder individually and collectively about this modern Medea figure.” (Céline Rouden) 5/5
According to Le Journal du Dimanche:
“Strewn with eloquent silences and powerful visual details, the film is enriched, along the way, by pleadings in which emotion surfaces, intense. To believe that Alice Diop’s cinema, unique in itself, at the crossroads of documentary and fiction, has magical powers.” (Alexis Campion) 5/5
According to Le Parisien:
“An exciting film, both slow and dense, “Saint-Omer”, which won the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival, is a great film by what it tells, but also by the power of its incarnation. .” (Writing) 5/5
According to Liberation:
“Make an extraordinary film about motherhood starting from an infanticide. Make a dry, honest, intelligent film from a terrible news item. This is the little miracle of Saint Omer, the first feature film by filmmaker Alice Diop […].” (Elisabeth Franck-Dumas) 5/5
According to aSee-aLire.com:
“Saint Omer is not a simple legal narrative. It is a dazzling writing, subtle, on cultural and family determinism, cinema and aborted motherhood.” (Laurent Cambon) 5/5
According to Critikat.com:
“The first fiction by Alice Diop, a noted documentary filmmaker, is inspired by both a Greek myth and witchcraft, which will not surprise viewers familiar with a work on the lookout for powers lurking in people’s lives. most common.” (Damien Bonelli) 4/5
According to The Obs:
“More than moved, we come out of it overwhelmed by the masterful way in which Diop was able to try to grasp the elusive and to question received ideas.” (Sophie Grassin) 4/5
According to First:
“Saint-Omer is a frontal, direct feature film. The mostly static shots prevent dispersion. Like Florence (Guslagie Malanda, impressive). Yet it is a real trial film, with its quest of truth, where the convolutions are numerous.” (Thomas Bauraz) 4/5
According to Les Echos:
“Saint Omer succeeds in the portrait of an enigmatic, icy and broken killer, masterfully portrayed by Guslagie Malanda, without completely convincing. Despite several moments of bravery and audacity, Alice Diop’s first feature film leaves a slight feeling of ‘incompleteness’. (Adrien Gombeaud) 3/5