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Sunday, 01 November 2020

First Impression: 'The Wait,' on longing for those lost

The film was screened last Thursday as part of the Emerging Directors section of the 9th Panorama of the European Film

Hadeer El-Mahdawy , Sunday 6 Nov 2016
The Wait
(Photo: still from L'atessa)
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L'atessa (The Wait) centres on two French women who meet on the Italian island of Sicily where a disturbing atmosphere surrounds their encounter. 

The mother, played by French actress Juliette Binoche, hosts her son's girlfriend, played by actress Lou de Laage, who has just arrived from Paris upon an invitation by the son Giuseppe, whom she finds absent.

The aggrieved mother assures the young girl that the son is absent due to his uncle’s sudden death, and together they wait for Easter to arrive and bring back Giuseppe.

Time goes by in a gloomy house steeped in mourning and mystery, as chats unravel between both women.

Directed by the promising Italian filmmaker Pierro Messina, L'atessa is an impressive picture that although marred by gloominess, exhibits remarkable cinematography.

The story is engrossed in details, ones that make up the states of sadness, anger and disappointment both women experience. Such details are manifest in the house’s shut windows, covered mirrors, an abandoned phone, and a room haunted by Giuseppe’s absence.

The scenes are steeped in tension. Anxiety-packed moments unfold as the young woman awaits the return of her lover, and as the mother tries to pull up the courage necessary to say what has thus far gone unsaid.

The 2015 Italian-French film received 14 nominations and scooped up six awards including the Best Actress Award, which went to Juliette Binoche at the Bari International Film Festival.

Following a full house screening last Thursday, the film will be screened again on Tuesday, 8 November at 6.30pm, Cinema Karim

Check the complete programme of Panorama for Cairo, Alexandria, Ismailia and Port Said here

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