Swiss film-maker and former social employee Fred Baillif has created this pressure-cooked realist drama a few group of minor women in a care dwelling, the place there’s something extra dysfunctional and tragic in regards to the supervising workers than in regards to the inmates themselves. Lora (Claudia Grob) is the director of this residential establishment, a tricky veteran of the system. Below her wing are troubled women together with Audrey (Anaïs Uldry), Précieuse (Joyce Esther Ndayisenga) and Justine (Charlie Areddy). Every of them is performing out, every has been abused indirectly, however they discover love and solidarity on this dwelling: for them it’s la famille, slangily shortened to la mif, equal, maybe, to “the fam”.
However from the very outset, it’s Lora herself who’s in deep trouble: she is formally reprimanded for permitting a state of affairs to occur whereby one of many women, at 17, has intercourse with a 14-year-old boy who has been allowed to go to with others for a celebration. She incautiously opens as much as one of many women about an unthinkably painful factor in her personal life, and when this similar woman spitefully throws this info again in Lora’s face throughout a later row, Lora’s ingesting drawback begins to resurface; she slaps one of many abusive moms who insults her, having been unlawfully demanding to see her daughter on the dwelling – and issues spiral uncontrolled from there.
Every of the ladies is launched with a special “chapter” model part, and the motion repeatedly rewinds to a particular and acquainted level, although with none very startling distinction or viewpoint-shift revelation. The power between the ladies is one thing that French cinema can do very effectively – I considered Céline Sciamma’s Bande de Filles, but in addition Sarah Gavron’s Rocks). It’s acted largely by nonprofessional newcomers and unscripted scenes have been allowed to unspool via improvisation and formed within the edit. This is a fascinating ensemble piece, acted with vehemence and sincerity, although it concludes a little bit melodramatically.