The New Girlfriend

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The New Girlfriend

While flirting with camp, François Ozon's The New Girlfriend offers thoughtful -- and humorous -- commentary on sexual and gender identity.

Francois Ozon's humorous psychological drama The New Girlfriend stars Anais Demoustier as Claire, a young woman whose closest friend since childhood, Lea, passes away leaving behind a husband, David (Romain Duris) and a newborn baby. One day she drops by David's house unexpectedly, and finds him dressed in his dead wife's clothes and feeding their baby with a bottle. He explains that Lea was well aware of his predilection, and eventually, so relieved that he has someone to share his secret with, David and Claire create a female persona for him named Virginia.

Writing for The Hollywood Reporter, David Rooney expressed his compliments on The New Girlfriend: "a delectable riff on transformation, desire and sexuality that blends the heightened reality of melodrama with mischievous humor and an understated strain of Hitchcockian suspense." At Variety, Justin Chang said "even as he (Ozon) heads down any number of tantalizing if borderline-nonsensical alleyways, Ozon maintains his diabolical wit, his infectious sense of play and his essential affection for his characters" and the film was "powered by beautifully controlled performances from Anaïs Demoustier and Romain Duris"

Critic Reviews

'It's less than it should've been, and a little mild. But Ozon makes it glide with confidence, in or out of heels.' Chicago Tribune

'"The New Girlfriend" never pretends to be more than what it is, a delicious and frothy fantasia with a teasing erotic frisson.' New York Times

'In Ozon's confident hands, "The New Girlfriend" has moments that juxtapose gentle humor and surprising depth of feeling.' Washinton Post

'In The New Girlfriend, viewers are given a piece that walks the tightrope between drama and comedy, thriller and thinkpiece. This is a film that artfully ponders the process of grief while also finding rebirth from within.' CineVue

Awards

San Sebastián International Film Festival 2014 Winner of the Sebastiane Award for Best Film

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