Movie review: 'Leaving'
LeavingKristin Scott Thomas has never won an Academy Award and she won’t for her work in “Leaving,” her latest, but let’s be clear: The “English Patient” star is among the finest actors of her generation. Here, the 50-year-old grabs hold of a sharp, if trashy, screenplay from writer-director Catherine Corsini and lifts it far above standard adultery-drama territory. In a French-language performance rife with conviction, Scott Thomas imbues the adulterous housewife Suzanne with a complex range of emotions. She projects sexiness and sadness, joy and anger, often all at once, as the character escapes her marriage to wealthy businessman Samuel (Yvan Attal) for the dreamy but broke Catalan day laborer Ivan (Sergi Lopez). From the lavish home Suzanne abandons to the sunlit, tree-covered hills of the lovers’ romantic escape, the film offers an endless stream of sumptuous visuals. Those and the operatic score, an engagingly conniving villain and hot sex scenes generate an old-fashioned romantic drama. But the movie’s real allure is found in the ways its star flicks her hair, darts her eyes and moves — tenderly, slowly and passionately — across each frame. She’s something to see, and we must all start paying attention.
Written and directed by Catherine Corsini
Starring Kristin Scott Thomas, Sergi Lopez, Yvan Attal and Bernard Blancan