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WILD INNOCENCE

France / Netherlands, 2001 (MIFF 2002, International Panorama)

Director: Philippe Garrel

After losing his wife to an overdose, François, a 30-year-old director, decides to make an anti-drugs film. But with a difficult subject matter, it's hard to find backers. Driven by the project, and the desire to place his new girlfriend, Lucie, in the leading role, he is offered a cynical pact: a shady businessman offers him a huge sum of money to smuggle two suitcases of heroin across the border. François accepts, and is soon filming in Amsterdam. But blinded by his goal, he fails to see that history is doomed to repeat itself.

Critically acclaimed, and unswervingly independent, filmmaker Philippe Garrel has carved out a fascinating career trajectory. Since 1982 almost all his films have screened either at Cannes or Venice Film Festivals. With Wild Innocence, Garrel's film-in-a-film is a subtle probe into obsession and humility. Recipient of the FIPRESCI award at Venice 2001, the film boasts fine performances, tight scripting and wide-screen black-and-white camera work shot unmistakably by Nouvelle Vague stalwart Raoul Coutard.


Philippe Garrel (born in Paris, 1948) made his first film at the age of 14 and subsequently destroyed it. For many years his films were shown without opening or closing credits. From 1970 to 1984 he collaborated with Nico, of Velvet Underground fame, who starred in many of his films. His films include La cicatrice intérieure (1970), Les hautes solitudes (1974) and J'entends plus la guitare (1991).

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