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NNarrative Competition

In the House

In the House

Original Title: Dans la maison
Director: François Ozon
France | French
2012 | 105min. | Colour
Subtitles: Arabic and English
Format: DCP
18+
François Ozon demonstrates once again both his versatility as a director and his ability to tease ominous overtones out of the most mundane situations in this quietly compelling thriller, adapted from Spanish playwright Juan Mayorga’s The Boy in the Last Row.

It’s the beginning of a new school year. We meet Germain (Fabrice Luchini), a disillusioned teacher tasked with motivating his teenage wards to express themselves in writing. He despairs at both their lack of insight and the dire state of the education system. His wife, Jeanne (Kristin Scott Thomas), listens to his complaints, but she is busy with her own problems: the twins that fund her gallery are threatening to close her down if she doesn’t show more commercial art. One student does excite Germain’s interest: Claude Garcia (Ernst Umhauer). The judgmental but intriguing tone of his essay about visiting the home of a classmate disturbs and fascinates him. Soon he is regularly coaching his star pupil. Meanwhile, Claude is insinuating his way into the family life of his affable friend and, via his writing, reports the results to Germain, whose Pygmalion complex starts to spin out of control. Claude’s influence on his friend’s family starts to tear them apart – but is it really happening or is just Claude testing his newly acquired literary skills? Reality, fiction, desire and frustration blur while the slow unraveling of apparently happy relationships seeds a deep sense of unease. A brief glimpse into the home life of our teenage Svengali offers no easy answers to his motives, instead raising tantalising possibilities that stay with you after the credits roll.

– Robyn Evans

Director,  François Ozon

Director,  François Ozon

François Ozon was born in Paris and graduated with a master’s degree in filmmaking before attending La Fémis, the prestigious French film school. Early short films such as A Summer Dress (1996) established his distinctive voice. His feature films, starting with Sitcom (1996), have won numerous awards and include Water Drops on Burning Rocks (2000), 8 Women (2002), Swimming Pool (2003) and Potiche (ADFF 2010).

Cast and Crew

Director
François Ozon
Cast
Fabrice Luchini, Ernst Umhauer, Kristin Scott Thomas, Denis Ménochet, Emmanuelle Seigner, Bastien Ughetto, Jean-François Balmer, Yolande Moreau, Catherine Davenier
Production Company
Mandarin Cinema, France 2 Cinema, Mars Films
Music
Philippe Rombi
Producer
Eric Altmayer, Nicolas Altmayer
Screenwriter
François Ozon
Editor
Laure Gardette
Cinematographer
Jérôme Alméras
Sound
Brigitte Taillandier
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