His most successful film yet in his native France, Making Plans for Lena
finds acclaimed auteur Christophe Honoré (Love Songs, Dans Paris, Ma Mère,
the upcoming Beloved
) in top form with this rapturously sprawling family saga that veers from painful to funny to painfully funny expertly capturing all the feints and digs that pass for conversation at when loved ones reunite.
Recently liberated from her job and husband, Lena (the captivating Chiara Mastroianni) heads home to Brittany with her two children to escape the chaos of Paris. But no such luck: from the moment she arrives she is confronted with unwanted advice, character analysis (that borders on character assassination) and a few other unexpected surprises. Alternately brusque and vulnerable, Mastroianni (Persepolis
) has never been better, radiating a deceptive calm at the center of this emotional storm. The stellar cast also includes Marie-Christine Barrault (Oscar nominee, Cousin Cousine
), Marina Foï, Jean Marc-Barr (Dancer in the Dark
) and French heartthrob Louis Garrel (The Dreamers