Festa del cinema
Having remained silent for 25 years, Astrid, the wife of a prominent lawyer, sees her family’s equilibrium shatter when her children embark on a crusade for justice.
An uncomfortable topic: abuse and silence inside the family. In his tenth feature-length work, Belgian director Joachim Lafosse crafts a sensitive and deep film by relying on the nuanced performances of Daniel Auteuil and Emmanuelle Devos. After 25 years, the serene family life of a well-known lawyer suddenly collapses, when his children decide to begin their own search for justice. Since the start of his career, Joachim Lafosse has crafted intimate films which, in particular, scrutinise the dysfunctional aspects of close emotional relationships and probe our most latent defects and contradictions. Un Silence mainly focusses on the idea of sharing through words, gracefully and sensitively attempting to demonstrate how difficult it can be, in today’s world, to open up and speak.
Crime provokes terror; terror provokes silence, which engenders guilt and shame. We are wrong to judge silence. It must be examined. It’s a symptom. You must never forget that silence is not the crime, and behind every silent person there is an ordeal, a difficulty in speaking up, a fragility. If I wrote a story based on what became known as the Hissel Affair in Belgium, it’s because the case perhaps dealt with what each of us makes of shame, guilt and silence. When I’m writing, the central question for me is how did it come to this, what preceded the tragedy. As in all tragedies, the outcome is fatal, inevitable and devastating.
Born in 1975 in Belgium, Joachim Lafosse has participated in the Locarno Film Festival with Folie privée - his first feature-length film - and Ça rend heureux; in the Venice Film Festival with Proprietà private; in The Directors’ Fortnight with Élève libre and L’Économie du couple; in Venice Days with Continuer, and in Cannes with Les Intranquilles. À perdre la raison won four Magritte Awards (the Belgian Oscars), including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress for Émilie Dequenne, who also won an Un Certain Regard Award. His Les Chevaliers blancs won the Best Director Award at the San Sebastián Film Festival.