Valley of Love

Valley of Love

Guillaume Nicloux (2015)

88min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
The searing heat of Death Valley is the setting for this mystery drama bringing together French screen icons Gérard Depardieu and Isabelle Huppert, essentially playing versions of themselves. True, they were never married and then divorced like the on-screen couple here, yet in what's surprisingly their first pairing since 1980's Loulou, they project a telling, lived-in intimacy as French parents brought together by the suicide of their estranged son. Each received letters from him, with specific instructions about meeting in this arid corner of Nevada, but what for what purpose? Writer/director Guillaume Nicloux sustains the intrigue with a careful drip-feed of revelations and, stranding the duo far from home in a tourist-trap motel, balances their renewed common purpose against a whole history of recrimination and regret, all the while delivering spooky frissons suggesting a spiritual resonance to their trip. Probably too enigmatic for all tastes, the film's very distinctive approach, aligned to mesmerising work from the co-stars, still makes it worth a look - not least to marvel at Depardieu's sheer lack of vanity given his increasingly Falstaffian frame.

Summary

An estranged couple meet for the first time in years in Death Valley, California, having responded to a message left for them by their dead son, who committed suicide six months previously. They are instructed to visit a series of locations in the desert, with the promise that their son's ghost will appear to them. Drama, starring Isabelle Huppert and Gerard Depardieu. In French and English.

Cast & Crew

Isabelle Isabelle Huppert
Gérard Gérard Depardieu
Paul Dan Warner
The woman Aurelia Thierrée
Director Guillaume Nicloux

Other Information

Language: English / FrenchColourTheatrical distributor: Curzon Film WorldAvailable on: DVDReleased on: 12 Aug 2016
Drama