Director: Mathieu Amalric

Country: France

Year: 2021

Duration: 1.37

Languages: French / subtitled in English

Original name: Serre moi fort

Category: , , ,

Hold Me Tight stars Luxembourgian Vicky Krieps, remembered for her leading performance in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread (2017). With bravura she plays Clarisse, a mother who, in the beginning of the film, decides to take her car and leave her big family home. Is she escaping something – perhaps guilt? Or is she somehow shaken or unstable?

Mathieu Amalric’s most ambitious directorial effort is one of those films one must watch in their entirety to really digest them. The fragmented road movie with classical piano interludes proceeds as in a trance, taking the viewer from one character to another. The bold, puzzle-like structure (with brilliant editing by François Gédigier) generates a flow-like back-and-forth mode in the viewer, creating a “reality” mixed with memories and imagination, even of the future. Energetic, pure cinema – hard to believe this is based on a play!

While Clarisse is on her long drive, her husband Marc (interpreted by the charismatic Arieh Worthalter) tries to make do at home with their daughter and son. Family, marriage, love… Ultimately, it may be more about loss, abandonment, grief. Hold me tight. (Timo Malmi)