Marion Cotillard gives a transcendent performance in this heart-wrenching drama of the working class from Belgium’s Dardenne brothers. Following an absence from work due to a mental breakdown, Sandra returns to a small solar-panel factory, only to discover that her job has been eliminated and a substantial bonus promised to the remaining employees. Her husband Manu (Fabrizio Rongione) offers emotional sustenance, but Sandra worries that his modest job alone won’t support their two children. The only chance she has to salvage her position is to spend a weekend tracking down enough coworkers willing to vote her back-
and give up their bonuses. Fighting despair and popping too many antidepressants, Sandra embarks on this seemingly impossible two-day quest, with every encounter implicitly revealing the vulnerability of workers on the fringes of today’s economy. Cotillard’s brave and unglamorous portrayal perfectly complements the Dardennes’ realism in a story filled with human compassion and lifted by little spiritual triumphs.
WITH SUPPORT FROM THE CONSULATE GENERAL OF FRANCE IN SAN FRANCISCO AND THE FRENCH AMERICAN CULTURAL SOCIETY
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