Synopsis by Nathan Southern
In 2004, a grotesque and unseemly incident took the European press by storm: a young French woman came forward and claimed to have been attacked by black and Arab thugs who mistook her for a Jew. But after her story broke, no witnesses came forward to support her, and security cameras at the train station revealed no such attack; the woman later admitted that she had ripped her own clothes, drawn swastikas on her own stomach, and fabricated the entire story. With the drama Fille du RER, acclaimed French writer-director André Téchiné presents a thinly veiled fictionalization of the same events. Émilie Dequenne stars as Jeanne, an unemployed girl who lives with her mother (Catherine Deneuve) in a Parisian suburb and spends the majority of her free time rollerblading. She has little knowledge of -- or interest in -- history or politics, and remains withdrawn, insular, and sullen, keeping the majority of her thoughts and observations to herself. Circumstances change just a bit when Jeanne enters a live-in relationship with a beefy, thuggish wrestler boyfriend, Franck (Nicolas Duvauchelle), living in a dingy warehouse, but violence soon erupts between the two. Jeanne also becomes acquainted with an attorney-cum-ex-boyfriend of her mother's (Michel Blanc), whose involvement in Judaic causes and his politically committed family prompt even greater feelings of alienation and isolation in Jeanne. When Franck's involvement in criminal activities comes to light and the police intervene, Jeanne perversely reasons that she can only become tied to history by inventing a role for herself, and decides to fabricate said story about the train -- little realizing the calamitous consequences that it will engender.
boyfriend, hoax, racism