APRES MAI / SOMETHING IN THE AIR

SYNOPSIS
Set in the early 1970s, this bracing semi-autobiographical film from Olivier Assayas resists easy nostalgia, focusing instead on the turbulence of one’s late teens and early twenties. The writer-director’s surrogate is a high-school student named Gilles (played by terrific newcomer Clément Mettayer), who was born too late to take part in the insurrections of May ’68 but is still consumed with revolutionary zeal. Over the course of this exceptional coming-of-age tale, Gilles will become disenchanted with the political hair-splitting and inflexible positions of the far-left movements he has devoted himself to, eventually finding a new purpose in painting and cinema. Playing out against a backdrop of perfect period detail (particularly evident in the sound-track choices), Something in the Air is the rare film that skillfully operates on both a micro and macro level. While delving deeply into Gilles’s private dramas as he tries to define himself as an artist, Assayas never lets us forget that this richly drawn adolescent protagonist is also a player in a much broader historical moment: the era when revolutionary hopes began to splinter and fade.

“Made with the bittersweet clarity of hindsight and the assurance of a director in peak form… Conjuring the mood and attitudes of 1970s European counterculture with pinpoint detail and nary a shred of naive romanticism, this tender but dispassionate semi-autobiographical drama offers a gentle rebuke to the celebratory spirit of many post-’68 movies, capturing how political zeal gives way to confusion, compromise and a dawning sense of personal identity.”
Justin Chang, Variety

DIRECTOR
Olivier Assayas

SCREENPLAY
Olivier Assayas

CAST
Gilles: Clément Métayer
Christine: Lola Creton
Alain: Felix Armand
Laure: Carole Combes
Leslie: India Menuez

AWARDS
Golden Osella, Olivier Assayas – Venice Film Festival (2012)

GENRE Drama
LANGUAGE French, English, Italian
RUNNING TIME 122’
PRODUCTION France, 2012
RATING Not Rated
FORMAT(S) Blu-ray, DCP, DVD

DISTRIBUTOR
IFC Films