The Origin Of Evil

The Origin Of Evil
The Origin Of Evil
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A wealthy patriarch in a luxurious beach house, an ostentatious wife, his suspicious daughter and her teenager daughter with attitude problems as well as a terrifying maid; all this might sound too much for the modest Stéphane (Laure Calamy of Call My Agent). But may be not. After decades, she has found her long-lost aged father and she’s desperate to join him. This is after all a family he has built. A family that is extremely dysfunctions but nonetheless still remains a family. This is what Stéphane has been yearning for throughout her life. Why not give it a try? That’s how things go in The Origin of Evil; Sébastien Marnier’s thrilling dark comedy from France.

Don’t let the title fool you into thinking that this is some kind of spooky horror film where demonic spirits begin coming out from nowhere out of thin air or something like that. This is not what it’s about at all even though if you consider the movie metaphorically speaking it could be seen as such. Probably the “evil” here initially is our ever present, wild and painful shadow selves who have unresolvable unsatisfied desires that will never be silenced any more amongst us which can lead to chaos if left alone just like in this sickening suspenseful ride that reminds me Almodovar movies only darker or Agatha Christie novels filled with clever twists . Now let us enjoy.

Faultless and School’s Out were other films directed by Sébastien Marnier. However, The Origin of Evil does better than its antecedents due to its story lines stuffed with as many family squabbles, disdainful looks and deeper plunges into classism than those earlier films. According to reports by Fanny Burdino who was also co-writer with the director for this film, he wrote it basing on some people whom he knew personally. Just think about what a dinner with this director must look like.

Stéphane is at the edge of madness. She’s leading a simple life and works as a fishmonger in a plant. Besides, her aggressive girlfriend (nicely portrayed by Suzanne Clement) is grinding her teeth during five-year imprisonment period without any joy around. One day Stéphane decides to call her estranged father Serge (Jacques Weber), think Succession’s Logan Roy but French style. Her strong desire to connect with his man and his family may mean that she craves being part of something bigger than herself, though there could be more into it. Could it be money that she is after? In fact, Serge is becoming weaker due to poor health and his clan including the maid look forward to his death.

It takes a while for the movie to get started on who the characters are and what is going on. When Stephane goes into Serge’s huge island paradise, she gets overwhelmed by the richness . She can’t worry too much about not feeling good enough because now there are people waiting for her to trip so they can laugh at her face . The maid distances herself from Stephane, refusing to warm up to her. Louise (an absolutely captivating Dominique Blanc), Serge’s wife, doesn’t only wear designer clothes like it’s nobody’s business; however, even such an inconsistent matriarch understands that you cannot simply let your guard down. George (Doria Tillier) who has had enough of a screwed up family and still finds it hard letting go off them.

These scenes involving members of the family are lively and amusing. Marnier’s actors give stunning performances and watching these people interact is truly delightful experience as rare as hen’s teeth . The filmmaker skillfully balances between intricate storyline and dark humor stemming from them.

Stéphane sees as the story unfolds that her presence at the villa is problematic for Serge’s family. She goes along with it for a while, but she’s abruptly pulled into a deeply unsettling world of family secrets and bitter betrayals. So there is a battle going on over the huge estate left by her estranged father and Serge himself isn’t so noble and lovely after all. However, what about that longing for… daddy? Money? What are you to do?

Serge and Stéphane soon enough discover that they can be allies of each other. Surely Stéphane who was broke would find solace in the villa. However, this comes at a price. The family members of Serge want to have him declared incompetent. Therefore, Stéphane might serve as an emotional bodyguard thereby saving Serge’s life. It seems like everyone wins.

Everybody involved feels the repercussions of that decision, and it makes the story even more crooked and vicious than it already was before . Without doubt none of this would have had quite the same bite had Marnier not filmed in his own estate . Think about it as another character; one that becomes a vibrant force towards the end moments of film . Reportedly Marnier rewrote his screenplay based on this Villa, which is an impressive 4,500 square feet jewel with a rich pink marble staircase .

Secrets and resentments rise to the surface as we move through this story; nevertheless there are some sweet moments when we get hints that Serges’ Family may come around for Steveson but alas,it is anyone’s guess ,and thats what makes this outing so enjoyable too . Again ,there’s also a nice call back to Stéphanes lover back in jail who is capable ever since then capable of wreaking havoc wherever she goes.

Alongside an impressive cast such as Laure Calamy – Outrageous, dynamic! – and a sparkling script, Sébastien Marnier employs other creative techniques. He uses a split-screen during their conversations in several places; probably drawing heavily from the old noir movies we have all seen. In general it makes these scenes much more dynamite.

It is also appropriate to note that while the film’s runtime may seem to work against it, an American director would have given us only about 90 minutes with these bright characters. So, take a seat and enjoy the ride. This film has also got some sexual pep. All good. And this is surprising but good actually . This current of misty eroticism spices up an already exceptional story . It adds another winning layer to a tale where preconceived ideas get blown away during unsuspecting moments. The Origin of Evil ,the last 10 minutes of which are triumph, shows that nothing is what it seems to be in life .

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