[AFFFF ’12] Et Soudain Tout Le Monde Me Manque (The Day I Saw Your Heart)

The Day I Saw Your Heart is an odd little film, one of the comedy/drama and slightly quirky variety. These types of film can go either way, this one falls somewhere in the middle, not quite being able to reach greater heights but not a total failure either. The story is about a family, two half sisters Justine and Dom, Justine has moved in with Dom and her husband after another relationship failed. They both have an odd and distant relationship with their father Eli, whom at 60 announces to them that he and his second wife Suzanne are expecting a baby, and Dom and her husband are going through all the difficulties trying to do the same. This sends things flying on a strange spiral for them all; with Justine finding a new man in her life but everything comes back to her relationship with her father.
It may sound a little weird and the film really is, it isn’t the easiest film to give a description on, as there is a lot going on but not quite enough substance behind it to really work well. We don’t really get a good grasp as to why the girls have this odd relationship with their father, we get the idea he was absent a lot but there was more we didn’t really know and we kind of needed that because there wasn’t a whole lot of sympathy for the daughters because of that. Eli’s constant need to befriend Justine’s boyfriends and as ex’s keep them in his life is never fully explored, the idea we get is that it is his weird attempt to get to know her without actually getting to know her. He’s an odd character, and more development there would have been nice.

The cast all did a nice job, the most recognisable name here is Mélanie Laurent as Justine, and she’s adorable. Her performance isn’t anything to write home about but she tries and really does better with the material in the second half. Florence Loiret Caille as Dom was also fine; she perhaps tried to give more than what was on paper, as did Claude Perron as Suzanne. Michel Blanc as Eli had the strangest role and he relished in that, certainly wouldn’t have been an easy job. I don’t really think anyone else was all that memorable, because at the end of the day the film wont be something you remember for days afterward, it will get lost in the shuffle.
The direction by Jennifer Devoldère was mostly fine, I think it was the script that was the let down for the film. The ingredients were all there but the script didn’t quite bring it all together. I am sure there are those out there who will like this more and those that will probably like it less. It is a fair effort, and a very strange type of film that takes even stranger directions.

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