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THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN

Director: ANDRE TECHINE

105 minutes| France| 2009| Subtitled| Colour| D-Cinema


The ever-incisive French director Andre Techine’s latest addresses a divisive real-life controversy in a thought-provokingly unexpected manner. Six years ago, France was rocked by a 23-year-old woman’s claim that she’d been the victim of an anti-
Semitic attack on a suburban Paris train, perpetrated by a gang of African origin.
The press had a field day, the President himself even weighed in, but when the
truth of the matter emerged, it was perhaps even more shocking.

Techine’s film takes only the idea of the assault, placing it within a fictional character study exploring the circumstances and consequences of such an incident. In so
doing, the story exposes not only the unthinkingly self-centred attitudes of Emilie Dequenne’s iPod-cosseted skater-girl slacker, but the issue of social cohesion when there’s seemingly little left to believe in. Catherine Deneuve (bewildered mum) and Michel Blanc (wily lawyer) offer charismatic support as Techine examines heavy-duty issues with a deceptively gentle hand. Notes by Trevor Johnston

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