#TIFF20: “SPRING BLOSSOM”
By George Kozera for Mr. Will Wong
Despite her luminous smile, it becomes quickly apparent that 16-year-old Suzanne (Suzanne Lindon) is bored. She is clearly not interested in the nonsensical prattle of her friends and classmates and escapes being in their company as often as possible. Even when she decides to go to a classmate’s house party, much to the surprise of her parents and older sister, she doesn’t quite fit in – she doesn’t like beer and when asked to rate all the boys there from 1 to 10, she tellingly replies with “they’re all 5s”. Then one day, passing a theatre on the way home from school, she notices a handsome, curly-haired and bearded man. Raphael is 35 years old and an actor and she senses that they are kindred spirits. They ultimately meet and realize that, despite their age difference, they are compatible in so many ways and a relationship slowly blossoms.
SPRING BLOSSOM, from France, is an atmospheric, languidly paced tale of love, made remarkable due to the immeasurable talents of Lindon. Not only is she the star of this Movie, she wrote the Script when she was 15-years-old and directed this Feature as well. Reminding me of a young Genevieve Bujold, she has the screen presence and charisma that rivals the auspicious debuts of Julia Roberts and Leonardo DiCaprio. Bathed in whites, her directorial choices mostly hit the spot despite a few self-indulgently choreographed moments. As a Writer, her ear for dialogue is authentic and fluid and the Plot is believable, never prurient. Arnaud Valois registers beautifully in the role of Raphael and never fails to captivate.
With Paris as a backdrop, I was swept away in a haze of Gauloise while being transfixed throughout SPRING BLOSSOM.
SPRING BLOSSOM screens at TIFF ’20 as follows:
Thu, Sep 10
TIFF Bell Lightbox
Fri, Sep 11
Online at Bell Digital Cinema
Streaming in Canada. Available from:
Thu, Sep 17
TIFF Bell Lightbox