(IN SAFE HANDS)
November 24, 7 p.m.
Drama | 110 min | Toronto Premiere
Abandoned at birth, baby Theo’s uncertain future lies in the hands of the Child Welfare Services. Jean, who is no stranger to the foster system, is given the responsibility of temporarily looking after Theo, while the members of the Adoption Agency have the difficult task of finding him a home. Meanwhile Alice, unable to have children of her own, has never stopped fighting to be a mother. After facing many setbacks, Alice is finally ready to welcome a child, just when the Adoption Service is seeking a home for Theo. Thanks to the dedicated members of social services, the paths of Alice and Theo will cross, blending the journey of Jean and the rest of the team along the way.
Herry has written this perfect film as well as directing it. To top it all off, the casting is excellent. Here is a beautiful film that cannot be missed.
Sandrine Kiberlain, Gilles Lellouche, Élodie Bouchez, Miou-Miou, Bruno Podalydès, Olivia Côte, Clotilde Mollet, Leila Muse, Stéfi Celma, Youssef Hajdi, Jean-François Stévenin, Aude Léger, Grégory Gadebois
César Awards (France 2019)
Pupille is a film of exquisite quality (…) Theo is delivered into the world by a mother very definitely not ready to care for him. Jean (Gilles Lellouche) is paid by the state to bring security to Theo's life, while a foster family is decided upon. Karine (Sandrine Kiberlain) is a case-worker assigned toTheo's care. Alice (Élodie Bouchez) wants to be a parent and fostering is her only chance. And so Pupille brings its characters together with a touch so deft we are all invested in the safe-hands Theo passes through before finally finding what we believe to be true love and care. It all sounds so saccharine, but it's not, the French government might do well to fund such films. Messages, like this, depicted as pure art, leave positive impressions about a civilised way of life.
— Paddington Sidney, A Sliver of Film
In Safe Hands is well researched, warmly acted, and intricately edited to interweave many strands, including mother, baby, nurses, doctors, social worker, foster parent, adoptive parents, and so on. The caring comes through in the warmth of the performances, which most notably include the popular and often funny Sandrine Kiberlain as one of the caseworkers, Gilles Lellouche as the chosen foster parent for the three months awaiting adoption, and Élodie Bouchez, with that big smile of hers, as the now single adopting parent who has steadfastly waited out a nine year process.
— Chris Knipp, Writing: Movies, Politics, Art