Sophie Marceau in 5 outstanding roles, from “La Boum” to “Everything went well”

In the captivating A woman of our time by Jean-Paul Civeyrac, in theaters on October 5, Sophie Marceau embodies a magnetic curator and avenging novelist. At the same time, the 55-year-old actress is the subject of a retrospective at the Cinémathèque in Paris. Until October 13, many cult films by the woman who was France’s favorite teenager thanks to The party (1980) will be projected. The opportunity to return to the best roles of a familiar and endearing artist, who knew how to take risks to better last in an industry that is not always kind to women over 40.

The trailer for “La Boum” (1980) by Claude Pinoteau

1. A rebellious teenager in “The party” (1980) by Claude Pinoteau

For many French people, Sophie Marceau will remain for eternity Vic (the diminutive of Victoire), this romantic, mischievous and rebellious 13-year-old girl enrolled in the Henri IV establishment, located in the Latin Quarter (in Paris), who absolutely wants to go to a party, falls in love and faces head-on the torments of the adolescence as well as the divorce of his parents. In The party (1980), a cult film in which a whole generation recognized itself, the budding actress, who was then 14 years old, exudes an insolent freshness, a disarming spontaneity and an impressive charisma. Faced with her accuracy, it is easy to understand why director Claude Pinoteau and his casting director Françoise Menidrey chose this young girl among the thousands auditioned (including Emmanuelle Béart and Sandrine Bonnaire), despite her total lack of experience.

Sophie Marceau does not come from a family with ties to the cinema. She is the daughter of a truck driver and a saleswoman in a department store. And she didn’t take any acting lessons. Yet, in The party, she does not play Vic. She is Vic. And the public is not mistaken. The cuddly-like feature film for the pre-internet generation will turn the actress into a star overnight, harassed right down to her home, which will force her parents to move from their HLM in Gentilly (Val-de -Marl). The wild and innocent side of the icon of French cinema in a heroine of teen movies perfect, that she embodies the girl, as in The Boom 2 (1982) – which earned him a César – and LStudent (1988) or the mother (in LOL in 2009).

The trailer for “Police” (1985) by Maurice Pialat

2. A delinquent lost in “Police” (1985) by Maurice Pialat

To many ways, the movie Police (1985) by Maurice Pialat, whose screenplay was written by Catherine Breillat after an investigation into drug trafficking circles in Belleville, Paris, is very disturbing. The shooting of the thriller took place under high tension, between the extreme pressure exerted on the shoulders of the young Sophie Marceau by the director, constantly destabilizing her and pushing her to tears, and the real slaps that would have been lavished on the actress by Gérard Depardieu, according to the star.

Beyond this detestable treatment, there is the talent of the actress, overwhelming in the role of a young delinquent. Sophie Marceau embodies with a lot of emotions Noria, the ex-girlfriend of a drug trafficker who begins a complex romantic relationship with a brutal and misogynistic cop (Gérard Depardieu). In this very dark gangster film, which was a great theatrical success when it was released, she is the light that prevents the viewer from sinking into pessimism.

Sophie Marceau in "The world is not enough" (1999) by Michael Apted. Photo by Keith Hamshere/Getty Images

Sophie Marceau in “The World Is Not Enough” (1999) by Michael Apted. Photo by Keith Hamshere/Getty Images

3. A Machiavellian James Bond girl in “The world is not enough” (1999) by Michael Apted

Sophie Marceau is part of the prestigious club of French James Bond girls alongside Carole Bouquet, Eva Green and Léa Seydoux. In The world is not enough (1999), she is Elektra King, daughter of a murdered oil tycoon and false magnetic victim, who seduces the secret agent (played by Pierce Brosnan) before revealing her true face, far more cruel and manipulative than the tender image sent back by the darling of French cinema.

With this glamorous, Machiavellian and convincing performanceSophie Marceau is increasing her popularity in the United States, a country she has already seduced with the feature film Braveheart in 1995 alongside Mel Gibson. She also shows that she excels in the role of the femme fatale with a dark aura and not only in the sparkling and solar performances in popular comedies (Do you want it or not) or incarnations of heroines in costume (Marquise, Chouans!, Anna Karenina).

Sophie Marceau in "Faithfulness" by Andrzej Żuławski (2000)
Sophie Marceau in "Faithfulness" by Andrzej Żuławski (2000)

Sophie Marceau in “Fidelity” by Andrzej Żuławski (2000)

4. A photographer subjected to temptations in “La Fidélité” byAndrzej Żuławski (2000)

In 1985, Sophie Marceau broke her image of a wise and familiar young girl by playing the role of a prostitute in love is pointing – a free adaptation of The Idiot by Dostoyevsky – performed by his companion, the Polish Andrzej Żuławski (with whom the heroine of The party will have a son). This is the beginning of a long risk-taking for the actress, who will shoot in several auteur films, in particular beyond the clouds (1996) by Michelangelo Antonioni and Wim Wenders.

In 2000, Sophie Marceau was again directed by her husband, Andrzej Żuławski, in the excessive, daring and often pretentious Faithfulness, modern and very personal adaptation of The Princess of Cleves. She intensely embodies the disturbing Clélia, a photographer who navigates the world of tabloid newspapers and finds herself confronted with adulterous sexual temptations. Alongside the charismatic Pascal Greggory and the young Guillaume Canet, the artist – sensual, romantic and passionate – delivers one of the best performances of her career. Even if the feature film has aged badly.

Sophie Marceau in "Everything went well" (2021) by Francois Ozon
Sophie Marceau in "Everything went well" (2021) by Francois Ozon

Sophie Marceau in “Everything went well” (2021) by François Ozon

5. A woman helping her father leave this world in “Everything went well” (2021) by Francois Ozon

The subject is most taboo, since it is the right to die with dignity required by a large number of patients, which is the subject of a real debate in France while being possible in Switzerland. But thanks to a trio of exceptional actors (Sophie Marceau, André Dussollier, Géraldine Pailhas), Everything went well by François Ozon escapes pure pathos and moral lessons.

Sophie Marceau, who plays the best role of her career there, is incredibly sensitive and accurate. as a novelist who must help her father (magnificent and whimsical André Dussollier) to die after a stroke. Courageous, she struggles throughout the film between the painful acceptance of the paternal choice and the desire to make him change his mind. A dilemma subtly told in which many carers have recognized themselves.

A woman of our time (2022) by Jean-Paul Civeyrac, in theaters on October 5. Retrospective Sophie Marceau at the Cinémathèque (Paris), until October 13.

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Sophie Marceau in 5 outstanding roles, from “La Boum” to “Everything went well”