"Tempête" by Samuel Collardey (FR)
Venice Film Festival 2015 - Orizzonti Section
Name: Giulia Rosa
Five minutes of clapping, the tears of joy of the main actor and an emotional hug between him and the director. This is how the official screening of Tempête, a French movie directed by Samuel Collardey, came to an emotional end at the 72nd edition of Venice Film Festival.
It is a true and realistic story that connects with simplicity and humanity’s various elements, familiar to all of us: problematic family dynamics, professional troubles and difficulties, and personal ambitions.
The title Tempête, which in English means “storm”, recalls the sea, the element that Dom – the main character- loves, but also the internal and emotional process that he will face during the whole movie.
Dom is a French fisherman who works in a fishing boat on the West French Coast, with sailing shifts of up to three weeks in a row. He loves fishing since he was sixteen years old, he has fishing “in his blood”. He is a father, divorced, and he has the custody of his two children, Mattéo and Mailys, both teenager, that live with him despite the fact he can rarely see them because of his work.
When his daughter gets pregnant, Dom’s ex-wife claims for her custody, as for the one of their son as well, pointing out as main reason his continuous absence.
Thus, Dom decides to change the daily rhythm of his life, trying to buy a boat to start working on his own, in order to have the possibility to be back at home at the end of the working day and give more stability to his family. But sometimes, even if big and strong, motivation is not enough to achieve the results deeply whished: that is why at the end Dom will be obliged to face reality and find another way to conciliate his need of being a good father with the work and with his personal ambitious.
Tactful and not invasive, Tempête is a movie that shines light on a common story for 89 minutes without tiring, and brings to the attention of the audience the fishing community as point of reflections on a certain lower class and its social dynamics. Among other factors, family connections are really well described and portrayed with a brilliant psychologic analysis.
Dom is an unusual father that despite his absence builds a strong relationship with his children, having fun with them, and even getting drunk with them when he is at home.
He is father and son at the same time, strongly connected with his mother, that does not hesitate to push him to fight, at the same time he is really attached to his daughter, that he decided to legally adopt when she was very young, after her real father left.
The film’s style gives the spectators the constant impression of being on a boat, because of the wetness as a recurrent element and because of several trembling framings.
The soundtrack floats elegantly with the scenes, filling the moments of silence without being too loud and emphasizing the pathos of the crucial moments for the development of the characters.
Even if it has a small cheesy touch, it is still hard not to love this movie, that plays well a balanced game among sweet emotions and bitter circumstances, bringing a focus on that big wish to become a better person hidden inside almost everybody. As such, you’ll struggle to leave the room without losing some tears