France 2 is broadcasting tonight the unpublished TV movie “The Friend Who Doesn’t Exist”, with Audrey Dana, Medi Sadoun, Thiphaine Daviot, and Victor Meutelet. An effective and oppressive psychological thriller about an “imaginary” friend who hides a very real threat.
What is it about ?
When her husband died, Camille moved with her 11-year-old son, Martin, near her younger sister’s home. Martin is almost silent since the drama. Camille is worried. Until the day he told her about Jeff, her new boyfriend …
Martin rediscovers a smile and a taste for life. Camille is happy. The day Martin is invited to sleep at Jeff’s, she heartily accepts. But the next day, at the end of school, Martin is nowhere to be found and Camille discovers that no student answers to the name of Jeff … Where has his son gone? His cell phone no longer responds. Very quickly everything seems to indicate that he was kidnapped.
Monday, October 25 at 9:05 p.m. on France 2, and already available on Salto
Who is it with?
To play Camille, the heroine of his telefilm confronted with the mysterious disappearance of her son, the director Nicolas Cuche chose Audrey Dana (Under the skirts of the girls), seen recently in Profession of the father and in the series For Sarah.
Facing her, Medi Sadoun (Les Kaïra, What did we do to the Good Lord?), Abandons the comedies to which he has accustomed us to take on the role of the cop in charge of the investigation, while the young Albert Geffrier (Simon’s Last Life) and Tiphaine Daviot (HP, In Family) play respectively Martin and Eve, Camille’s son and younger sister.
A nice cast for L’Ami qui non existent, completed by Victor Meutelet (Grand Hôtel, Le Bazar de la charité), Guilaine Londez (Le Discours), and Yvan Naubron (Plan Coeur).
Well worth a look ?
Co-written by Nicolas Cuche and novelist Olivier Norek (Area), which has the particularity of being a trained police officer, L’Ami qui non existent has the good idea to renew the very fashionable genre of the thriller based on the disappearance of a child by rubbing against the face of the ‘imaginary friend. Or in any case to what could be one on paper, since the possibility of a foray into the fantastic, which the initial pitch could give rise to hope for, is quickly swept aside in favor of a more realistic approach. But no less intriguing.
The great strength of this well-crafted psychological thriller lies above all in its interpretation in tune. Audrey Dana is excellent in the skin of this mother of a family already weakened by a recent tragedy, who sees her certainty and her balance falter a little more when her son, Martin, disappears and she is not long in finding himself on the list. suspects because of the gray areas in his past.
Albert Geffrier, the interpreter of the young Martin, is for his part the real revelation of The Friend who does not exist, in a role anything but easy. While Tiphaine Daviot and Victor Meutelet, who we find here in an unusual register that fits him like a glove, once again confirm all the good we think of them project after project.
By juggling between a mysterious detective story and the mental health of a heroine that he logically pushes us to question, the France 2 television film, presented a few weeks ago at the La Rochelle Festival, proves to be extremely effective, gradually distilling small an oppressive and disturbing atmosphere. Reinforced by multiple hypotheses and false tracks that easily maintain the viewer’s interest to the end.
Only downside: a final revelation that risks dividing and is not really up to the rest. But The Friend Who Doesn’t Exist, served by very good actors, at least has the merit of offering something different in a French audiovisual landscape overloaded with thrillers and other little inventive thrillers.