Xavier Legrand (2017)

15 Certificate


Our Score
No one does heavy-duty domestic drama quite like the French. After a keep-your-wits-about-you opening salvo of background dialogue, the feature debut of director Xavier Legrand (elaborating on the plot of his Oscar-nominated 2013 short Just before Losing Everything) hurls you headlong into the bitterest of child custody battles, from the court hearing with all its arguments and counter-arguments, through to a violent climax that comes complete with hunting rifle. Legrand's direction is unfussy, and all the more effective for it. But it's the feel-of-the-real acting from Léa Drucker, Thomas Gioria and, in particular, Denis Ménochet (as the abusive husband/dad) that really transforms Custody into something nail-bitingly special. The subject matter won't be to everyone's taste, but for more adventurous viewers this is something to be savoured, if not always comfortably.

Cast & Crew

Antoine Besson Denis Ménochet
Miriam Besson Léa Drucker
Julien Besson Thomas Gioria
Joséphine Besson Mathilde Auneveux
Samuel Mathieu Saikaly
Sylvia Florence Janas
The judge Saadia Bentaïeb
Miriam's lawyer Sophie Pincemaille
Antoine's lawyer Emilie Incerti-Formentini
Clerk Coralie Russier
Director Xavier Legrand
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Other Information

Language: French +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: PicturehouseGuidance: Violence, swearingReleased on: 13 Apr 2018