Louis Garrel’s new film, “The Innocent”, was presented at the 75th Cannes Film Festival. A subtle comedy between marivaudage and heist film with Roschdy Zem, Anouk Grinberg and Noémie Merlant.
Louis Garrel and his great team in Cannes
This year, Louis Garrel had the opportunity to climb the steps of the Cannes Film Festival several times. From the first weekend of this 75th edition with The Almond Trees by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi where he plays Patrice Chéreau. Then barely two days later, on Tuesday May 24, for the presentation of his own film, The Innocent, on the occasion of the evening of the 75th Anniversary of the festival. And to accompany him, the actor and director had by his side Roschdy Zem, Anouk Grinberg and Noémie Merlant.
This is not the first time that we have seen Louis Garrel appear on the Croisette as director. Barely a year ago his film The crusade was part of the Cinema for the Climate selection. Before that it is The two friends which had been selected in 2015 for Critics’ Week.
The Innocent : “A robbery film from Poitou-Charentes”
For his fourth feature film, Louis Garrel therefore proposes with The Innocent a refreshing comedy. He interprets there Abel, who sees with a very bad eye his mother’s sudden marriage to a prisoner, but obviously can’t do anything about it. When Michel leaves, Abel will remain on his guard and go so far as to clumsily spy on him. Except that nothing works. Michel seems clean and his mother is madly in love with him. Until the day when a new plot has to be set up, and Abel finally finds himself forced to help the man he had finally accepted.
With The InnocentLouis Garrel embarks on the heist movie. But well aware that he could not compete with the Americans on this ground, he wanted to fully assume a very French atmosphereas he explained in a press conference:
I said it has to be a Poitou-Charentes robbery film almost. A local thing, from our region. And marivaudage, with the robbery film, that makes an alliance which is really from home.
Romance and pop music
In effect, The Innocent is sometimes in one genre (on the edge of a thriller), sometimes in another (the romance with Abel and his friend Clémence), always with an absolutely delicious comic lightness. Fine humor, obtained as much by dialogues as situations, and obviously the play of the interpreters. If Anouk Grinberg offers emotion with a touching character, and Roschdy Zem is still as elegant, it is to Noémie Merlant that returns the funniest role with Clémance. A character who is fearless and ready for all the craziest situations, a perfect contrast with a more reserved Abel.
Finally, Louis Garrel plays intelligently with different cinema registers to give to his work a resolutely pop tone (the music of the film goes in this direction) and dynamic. We are not bored for a little over an hour and a half and it is without difficulty that we let ourselves be carried away by simple and easy to like characters.
The Innocent will be released in theaters on October 12, 2022. The film was presented at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival.