In the Name of My Daughter, directed by André Téchiné
To no one's surprise, probably, Téchiné, director of Ma saison préférée and Les roseaux sauvages, is not interested in the gory details. In his screenplay, co-written with Cédric Anger and based largely on the book by Agnès's mother and brother, he dissects and slowly, painstakingly examines the relationships among the three principal characters. Catherine Deneuve, a Téchiné favorite, is regal and icy as Renée Le Roux, the mother whose moneyed hauteur distances her from Agnès -- somewhat unconvincingly, she is platinum blonde and with chic cigarette holder in the 1970s portions, graying and walking with a cane in the 2000s, an aging trick that is also a nod to the agelessness of Deneuve herself. Guillaume Canet, now the partner of Marion Cotillard, is smooth and heartless as Agnelet. He is acknowledged, deep into the closing credits, for his part in creating dialogue for his character, the latest example of Téchiné's use of actor improvisation, which he incorporates into the screenplay. Canet's contribution was based in part on his conversations with the real Agnelet: "What is crazy about him is that sometimes you really feel he's guilty," Canet said in one interview, "and sometimes you absolutely don't."
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This film is currently playing at Landmark's Bethesda Row Cinema.