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SynopsisAnne (Juliette BINOCHE), a well-off Paris-based mother of two and investigative journalist for ELLE, is writing an article about university student prostitution. Her meetings with two fiercely independent young women, Alicja and Charlotte are profound and unsettling, moving her to question her most intimate convictions about money, family and sex.
Elles is a new film directed by Malgoska SZUMOWSKA, a polish director who has been under the spotlight for her controversial films, Stranger (2004) and 33 Scenes from Life (2008). Juliette BINOCHE plays the role of a middleaged woman of the middle class, leading a peaceful life as a mother of two and a journalist for a magazine. While writing an article about college students’ prostitution, Anne becomes acquainted with two girls, Alicja and Charlotte, as she covers the story. Through these women’s stories, Anne faces the realities of prostitution and
ironically, confronts the realities of the middle class that exists in her life. The discussion regarding free sexual experiments and the pursuit of desires has backpedaled, and in the monogamous marriage structure, middle class women became beings that have transcended sexuality, unable to fulfill their sexual desires. On the other hand, young immigrant women became over-sexualizes and sexually exploited in the increasing sex industry.
The director does not take a particular side regarding the discourse about prostitution. Instead, she shows how the women in prostitution actually did not have a choice, although they say that it was their choice. In this way, she visualizes the context and the structure of the society that forced this choice on women. This film makes the audience think about women’s sexuality and the society’s double standards - repression of sexual desire and exploitation of sexuality. (HONG So-in)
Malgoska SZUMOWSKAMalgoska SZUMOWSKA
Born in 1973 in Cracow, Poland. She is a graduate of the Lodz Film School. At the age of 25, she made her first feature film, A Happy Man which received a special prize at the Thessaloniki Film Festival and was nominated for Best Director Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Her second feature film, Stranger was presented at the Sundance Film Festival and at the Panorama Special section of the Berlin International Film Festival. In 2008, 33 Scenes from Life received the Silver Leopard Award at the Locarno International Film Festival.