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15th Biffes 2024: Yannick Directed by Quentin Dupieux

The first movie I watched at the 15th Bangalore International Film Festival (Biffes) 2024 was called Yannick and it was brilliant. The movie was subtle, contained a uniquely crafted premise, and was directed well. Even the ending was done well without any overt display of violence or bloodshed.

Yannick movie directed by Quentin Dupieux

Here is what I thought of Yannick.

The Plot of Yannick

Watching this movie was a no-brainer with the plot being so entertaining. The movie revolves around a Night Watchman who goes to a play to unwind only for the play to make him feel worse. So he takes things into his own hands by making the actors perform a play that he just wrote while holding everyone at gunpoint.

Raphaël Quenard plays the lead role of Yannick in the movie

The language barrier (French) helps make the whole movie slightly more interesting.

The things that you notice right off the bat is that the actors and Yannick both seem to be leading lives of quiet desperation. Another aspect is that Yannick is an astute observer of his surroundings. He notices that the play is either unpopular or is being performed in a theater that isn't in a popular location.

Yannick confronting the stage actors

As time goes on Yannick begins to interact with his literally captive audience only to find that the actors themselves are not too happy about doing the play. The movie is left open-ended with the SWAT team arriving to take out Yannick.

Yannick arguing with the stage actors in the movie

As the cast of the previous play start performing his play, Yannick tears up from the instant relief and validation the improvisation offers him. It is beautiful in a way to see Yannick finally responding positively to something while neck-deep in frustration and hopelessness.

Compared to the other movies in The Biffes 2024, this movie was relatively cheerful and upbeat with very little violence, if any at all.

The Cinematography

The entire movie takes place in a beautiful French Theater that has not been very well-maintained. Considering the nature of the plot and the way the subject matter is handled you do not notice that as an audience you are restricted to one venue. The inside of the theater is beautiful, and ornate and adds to the ambiance of the scene.

The Cast

The entire cast is new to me considering I don't watch a lot of French movies. Pio Marmaï does a great job of portraying a complex character named Paul Riviere who is stuck in a rut. Raphaël Quenard plays the lead Yannick, the night watchman who has had it with his life and looks to the theater as a creative outlet.

Pio Marmaï plays Paul Riviere in Yannick movie

Blanche Gardin plays Sophie Denis the lady actor who is hilarious along with Sebastien Chassagne playing William Keller.

Should You Watch It? Yes!

The premise of this film alone is worth watching, but if you factor in the great performances, direction, and overall execution - this is a must-watch movie.

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