When we first meet Favier’s central character, 15-year-old Lyz (Noée Abita), she trains rigorously in the cold, stomping on the ground with quick steps that simulate the movements of the ski. Against the backdrop are the majestic snow-capped French Alps that she can’t help but glance longingly, even when her trainer curtly asks the ambitious rookie to step back and not interfere with everyone. world. In these opening moments of her powerful and meticulously calibrated film – and many other equally complex scenes that follow – the filmmaker stays close to Lyz’s receptive face, as well as her beautifully deep and wide eyes that still linger on. a childish territory. innocence, capturing her insatiable desire to rise to the top and be seen for who she is in the process.
In this regard, “Slalom” rhymes with the likes of Andrea Arnold’s “Fish Tank” and Joyce Chopra’s “Smooth Talk”, telling a centuries-old story of youthful mental and emotional hunger, unfortunately susceptible to abuse between children. large -UPS manipulative hands. In the case of the talented loner Lyz, whose life lacks sufficient adult guidance with an absent father and a caring but self-centered mother, Catherine (Muriel Combeau), that predator ends up being none other than her overpowered ski trainer Fred ( Jérémie Renier)). First tough on the inexperienced high school student at the exclusive ski club renowned for raising the nation’s top professional athletes, Fred changes his tone over time, naming Lyz as his new star intern, giving him compliments that build confidence and motivational tapping. on the back.
Well they are at least Assumed be motivating, but it won’t take long for audiences to catch his subtly inappropriate physical contact and longer-than-necessary domineering gazes at Lyz. There’s also all the constant, carefully planned grooming that confirms our most demoralizing suspicions about Fred – improper speeches about the beauty of Lyz’s menstrual cycle, constant praise to heighten his sense of pride, and more. So when the indescribable sexual abuse scenes arrive, filmed with a sense of harshness and ruthless truthfulness – sometimes just a little too close to the exploitation themselves – you will recognize that you have gritted your teeth the whole time, hoping somehow avoid seeing the inevitable. And you will also realize that you have been several steps ahead of the young girl, who can only respond to the atrocity in a state of total shock. Lyz’s emerging silent perception mixed with a side of stubborn denial is too overwhelming to witness: as she was busy feeling an overwhelming disappointment with her mother starting a new job and a new romance to start and win her competitions one by one, Fred dug his claws deep into her somewhere backstage.