Julien is an adorable boy on the cusp of adolescence, but he is also a prisoner of love. His mother, neglected by her academic husband, adores him excessively and controls his every move, often through cruel psychological bullying. Julien tries every way he can to break free from his mother’s grasp finding respite at his grandmother’s house and in the stolen moments with his secret girlfriend. But there is nothing stronger than a mother’s love…A terrifying psychological thriller and a gripping character study by Nathalie Baye.
This film has lots of the aesthetic detail that comes so well from the French. But, unfortunately it does not display the psychological subtlety I enjoy most in their work. Characters are unalloyed and predictable. Symbolism coarse. The subject material is very demanding, so these flaws are hard to ignore. I found more truth in "Savage Grace".