Shoppers flock to Leonor Serraille’s in-competition film, ‘Mother and Son’

MK2 Films has secured key territory deals for Leonor Serraille’s drama Mother and Son, which premiered in competition at the Cannes Film Festival to critical acclaim.

“Mother and Son” follows the life of a young African woman, Rose, and two of her four children, Jean and Ernest, who came to France from the Ivory Coast in the 1980s with high ideals. Balancing parenting responsibilities and low-paying jobs, Rose still strives to find true love and fulfill her own desires, but ultimately struggles to strike a balance between her role as a mother and a woman . Meanwhile, Jean and Ernest will choose different paths to fit into French society as they come to terms with their identity conflicts and their mother’s life choices.

MK2 Films has exported the film to UK (Picture House), Spain (Vertigo), Italy (Teodora), Sweden (Triart), Benelux (Cherry Pickers), Greece (One From the Heart), Portugal (Leopardo), Norway (Arthaus) , Denmark (Angel), Switzerland (Cineworx), Australia/New Zealand (Hi Gloss) and Taiwan (Andrews). Further deals are under negotiation.

Variety’s Guy Lodge described the film as a “gently harrowing tale of immigrants finding themselves and losing each other”; and said it was an “emotionally sharp, elegantly tripartite second feature.”

Mother and Son marks the second appearance of Serraille, who won the Camera d’Or five years ago with her feature debut Jeune Femme. Serraille is one of five directors applying for this year’s Palme d’Or.

On the surface, “Mother and Son” marks a departure from “Jeune Femme,” whose tragicomic plot revolved around a young single woman going through a painful breakup. In fact, both films provide multi-faceted portraits of women confronted with adversity.

“Rose and Paula [the protagonist of ‘Jeune Femme’] have similarities, they are complex and unique female characters,” said Serraille, who praised Annabelle Lengronne for her performance, “which spans different ages and mixes lightheartedness, fantasy and tragedy,” said Serraille diversity.

“Mother and Son” was produced by Blue Monday Productions in co-production with France 3 Cinéma in collaboration with Palatine Etoile 18 and Cofinova 17.

The film features outstanding performances from Annabelle Lengronne, Stéphane Bak, Ahmed Sylla, Kenzo Sambin and Sidi Fofana. The cast is completed by Audrey Kouakou, Étienne Minoungou, Thibaut Evrard, Jean-Christophe Folly, Laetitia Dosch. Shoppers flock to Leonor Serraille’s in-competition film, ‘Mother and Son’

Charles Jones

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