COMPETITION – Ozon discovers a young and pretty muse

Film cast © AFP

She is certainly young. And beautiful too. So it’s hardly surprising that François Ozon has succumbed to the charms of  Marine Vacth. The model has  awakened the erotic side of the director’s filmography and brings a fresh sensuality to the prestigious list of actresses he has enjoyed tormenting or glorifying throughout his career.

Here she abandons the catwalk to take her first steps into the film world. After two appearances for Klapisch (My Piece of the Pie) and Aracady (Ce que le jour doit à la nuit), Marine Vacth, 23, plays an adolescent who sells her body. And she does so not through coercion but for simple pleasure, during a hotel encounter with a partner she meets on a social network.

With Young and Beautiful, Vacth plays the first leading role of her career. It has to be said that François Ozon has a knack of discovering promising actresses. In 2000 he gave a chance to Ludivine Sagnier, still largely an unknown, in Water Drops on Burning Rocks. The same Ludivine Sagnier who would radiate three years later in Swimming Pool (Competition, 2003), wicked in a bikini, alongside Charlotte Rampling, the director’s muse and favourite actress.


When it comes to the females of the species, Ozon brooks no limits and takes on not one, not two but 8 Women (2002). In the same house, he watches as Isabelle Huppert, Catherine Deneuve and Virginie Ledoyen, to name but a few, tear themselves apart as they play out an elegant and charming Cluedo. Nature is revealed in these characters, fragile and elegant, glamorous and cruel by turns, and clashes are never far off. A light and yet grating portrait of womanhood emerges.

Ozon sees Young and Beautiful as the feminine alter ego of his last film In the House (2012). He revisits the theme of adolescence, already tackled with gusto in his short films, shot through with sexuality, no less typical of his work, and teeming with women. Yes, those women again…

Tarik Khaldi


Thursday 16th May / Grand Théâtre Lumière / 8.30 a.m. – 2.30 p.m. – 7.30 p.m.
Friday 17th May / Buñuel Theatre / 12.00

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