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Things To Come, review: ”Excruciatingly tedious, but it’s French and Huppert is in it”

PUBLISHED: 14:40 31 August 2016 | UPDATED: 15:05 31 August 2016

Things To Come, starring Isabelle Huppert

Things To Come, starring Isabelle Huppert

Archant

Things To Come stars acting institution Isabelle Huppert but it lacks deeper meaning

Isabelle Huppert is a French acting institition; she’s kind of like their Barbara Windsor.

From their saucy youthful exploits – bikini top popping open in Carry on Camping, baring her arse to some cattle for Godard - the respective nations have been emotionally invested in their life journeys.

Of course, being French, Huppert’s journey has been much more intellectual and high brow than that of our Bab’s (and she’s never done an advert for Jackpot Joy Bingo).

Both have become performers whose presence transcends that of the material. Huppert is an actress, and a damn fine one, but now it seems like she herself is the work of the art, and the films she appears in are the latest gallery in which it is to be displayed.

In Things To Come she is the whole film.

She plays a teacher of philosophy whose life is slowly falling apart: her elderly mother suffers from depression; her husband philanders; her publishing career is faltering.

Despite the title, there is very little in the way of things to come.

You watch Huppert reacting to her changing circumstance and that’s it.

There are two or three points when the film seems to be about to tip you off about the deeper meaning, but then just continues on its same unflustered manner.

You appreciate the subtlty and naturalism with which the characters and situations are drawn, but ultimately it’s all water off the canard’s back. Though I Løved her earlier film Father Of My Children, I found this to be excruciatingly tedious.

But it’s French and Huppert is in it, and for many people that is more than enough.

Rating: 3/5 stars

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