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Foreign Film - 1,000 Times Good Night - Juliette Binoche

1,000 Times Good Night - Juliette Binoche

1,000 Times Good Night
Juliette Binoche, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
Directed by Eric Poppe
Norway 2013
Film Movement 2014

Film Movement really knows how to select the foreign films it offers on DVD. The latest is 1,000 Times Good Night. It stars Juliette Binoche as a war photographer who has to make a choice between work and family and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as her husband. It is a good movie but not way up there on such a list. There are no subtitles for this film though with Danish and French lead actors and the very subdued way they often speak, it would have been useful.

Rebecca (Binoche, who won an Oscar for The English Patient and starred in Chocolat) is a war photographer who gets injured in a suicide bombing. She returns home to her husband (Ccoster-Waldau) and two daughters to convalesce. She immediately sees that things are rather tense with both husband and eldest daughter and he tells her he can no longer support her choice of career. Rebecca has a decision to make.

Later, she gets an offer to work at a nice, safe refugee camp in Kenya and her daughter talks her into letting her go with her. This is the catalyst even if it comes a bit late in the film.

I fail to understand how the daughter lets the mother get away with what she does next or believe the scene in the auditorium near the end.

Overall, this is a good if rather moody movie. I am however always annoyed with cinematography that attracts attention to itself and there is lots of it here. I understand Rebecca is a photographer and so the film must share that eye but there are too many scenes that are mostly there to show how artsy the cinematographer and director are. At the same time, there is one instance of very sloppy cinematography when Rebecca goes in her daughter's room and the bead curtain strobes.

Unlike the usual Film Movement DVD, this one does not have a short as a special feature.  Instead, there is Behind the Scenes footage, Interviews with the stars and the director.

See our review of Erik Poppe's Troubled Waters also from Film Movement

Richard Lanoie

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