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Filmography • Orpheline
  • Cast Highlights:
  • Adèle Haenel
  • Adèle Exarchopoulos
  • Solène Rigot
  • Vega Cuzytek
  • Character: Tara
    Production Status: In theaters
    Release Date: March 29, 2017 (France)
    Director: Arnaud des Pallières
    Writers: Christelle Berthevas (screenplay), Arnaud des Pallières (screenplay)
    Genre: Drama
    MPAA Rating: n/a

    Plot Outline:
    Four moments in the lives of four female characters.

    A little girl from the countryside, playing a game of hide and seek that turns to tragedy. A teenager, caught in an endless succession of runaways, men and mishaps, because anything is better than her desolate family home. A young woman who moves to Paris and has a brush with disaster. The grown-up at last, an accomplished woman, who thought she was safe from her own past.

    Gradually, these characters come together to form a single heroine.

    The film opens with leggy tough girl Tara (Gemma Arterton) being released from prison. The first thing the ex-con does is go to the school run by Renée (Adèle Haenel), a 27-year-old kind and attentive woman, so she can demand her part of a sum they stole together seven years earlier. Not much later, and in front of her partner (Jalil Lespert) with whom she’s been trying to conceive, Renée’s dragged away by the police who claim she’s someone called Karine.

    Elsewhere, Sandra (Adèle Exarchopoulos), 20, is a flirty young woman who sits down in a café to meet an older, somewhat lecherous man who, besides younger women, is into betting on horse races. At the racetrack, Sandra becomes a cashier and meets Tara, whose plan is to rig the system and make a lot of money. To convince Sandra, she tries to seduce her.

    After visiting Renée in prison, the film introduces the precocious 13-year-old Karine (Solène Rigot), who tells everyone she’s 18 or, if they don’t believe her, 16. At a club, she picks up the owner of a construction company and seems in control. When she finally returns home, however, her father is furious and it becomes clear that her behavior is typical psychology 101: she craves attention because she’s not getting any at home.

    The fourth protagonist is 6-year-old Kiki (Vega Cuzytek), who loves to play outside until things go awry in a foreboding junkyard.

    If you look back through someone’s life you’ll encounter someone who is perhaps intrinsically the same in every phase of life, but is in some senses also unrecognisable. That’s why the lead, a school director, is here portrayed by four different actresses using an exciting form of narrative that does entail some risk of disorientation.

    Arnaud des Pallières made this film on the basis of the idea that every life is in fact made up of several lives, and every personality of several personalities. To understand who his protagonist Renée – the young headmistress of a small school who can’t escape her past – is, we have to get to know the people she has been: the adolescent Sandra, the teenager Karine and the little girl Kiki. She is played by actresses who don’t bear a striking resemblance to one another; one way of emphasizing these differences.

    The risk of his audience becoming disoriented doesn’t seem to bother Des Pallières, who allows the narrative threads to run together seamlessly: he knows that the average viewer instinctively looks for similarities to find cohesion within the story. The model for this exciting narrative form is the life of screenwriter Christelle Berthevas, with whom he previously made Michael Kohlhaas (2013).

    Gemma’s Role:
    Gemma plays Tara, a woman who, released from prison and on a mission to settle old scores, goes in search of headmistress Renée (Adèle Haenel). She wants to demand her part of a sum they stole together seven years earlier.

    Tara appears in the first two stories.

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