France comes out with a new film 'Two of Us'

Mon. February 1, 2021 12:00 AM
by Jerry Nunn

Just in time for a trophy, a new French film called Two of Us debuts On Demand on Friday, February 5 with much fanfare. France's official submission for Best International Feature Film for the 93rd Academy Awards has a lot to offer viewers that crave diversity. 

Two lesbian seniors have a secret life together as neighbors and lovers, while one of them is still firmly stuck in the closet after decades. Barbara Sukowa plays neighbor Nina and Martine Chevallier is Madeline, who struggles coming out to her family when the opportunity arises at the beginning of the film. Madeline's health declines and Nina is left to pick up the pieces, while still trying to hold onto Madeline's privacy.

Two of Us is a difficult film to watch for many of us who have been in a similar situation of not being honest with family members about our sexuality. The movie reminded me a bit of HBO's If These Walls Could Talk 2, where Vanessa Redgrave's character has no rights when her partner of many years passes away and the family becomes involved. This is a very different storyline, but it is another case where LGBTQ+ rights are so important to have in writing. Two of Us makes a case by showing that coming out to those around us should be done sooner rather than later. 

Director Filippo Meneghetti uses closeups, loud sounds and small corridors to create a claustrophic atmosphere to the surroundings of these two women. The two main actresses give strong performances, Sukowa with her quiet determination and Chevallier with powerful facial expressions. The plot takes some sharp turns that French cinema has mastered over the years, making this a worthy entry into awards season.

After the movie, actress Julianne Moore moderated a conversation with Meneghetti and Sukowa. Moore's previous same sex film The Kids Are All Right was discussed and the two older ladies in love story was celebrated by the trio. 

For a first time film director, Meneghetti has proven to be one to watch in the future. Two of Us will hit home with many people while watching at home in their living rooms. Some may even look at their neighbors differently and with a fresh perspective, thanks to a story inspired by true happenings and even truer love.