Savagely attacked in December 2012, Maureen Kearney was convicted of lying, then released. “La Syndicalist” retraces the story of her ordeal in a captivating thriller.
The news item had only been a thread in December 2012 in the press, when an Areva trade unionist had been attacked at her home in the Paris region, gagged, tied up, her stomach scarified with an “A”, the handle of a knife stuck in the vagina. Five years of investigation had led to a trial which condemned her for false denunciation against her employer in 2017, rectified a year later on release. Isabelle Huppert embodies this victim who has become guilty in The Syndicalist by Jean-Paul Salomé which comes out on Wednesday March 1st. Disturbing, disturbing, uplifting.
CFDT trade unionist at Areva (a multinational specialist in the nuclear industry), Maureen Kearney discovers a plan to transfer skills to China leading to drastic cuts in personnel. After pressure and threats, she was violently attacked at home. But investigators find no trace of violence and doubt his allegations. From victim, Maureen becomes guilty.
Interested in whistleblowers, director Jean-Paul Salomé thought of adapting the story of Irène Frachon at the origin of the Mediator scandal. Emmanuelle Bercot defeats him the pawn with The Girl from Brest (2016). Then he discovers the drama experienced by Maureen Kearney, whose violence looks like a thriller with as many political implications as the pharmaceutical scandal. Emerging from his collaboration with Isabelle Huppert on The mum (2020), the resemblance of the actress to Maureen Kearney strikes him, and confirms it in his project. Deal done. The result on the screen is in line withErin Brockovich, alone against all (2000) on water pollution from shale gas in the United States, or Goliath (2022) on that of glyphosate in agriculture.
Red stroke on white background
Isabelle Huppert can definitely play anything. Mayor of a municipality of Seine-Saint-Denis in The promisess, she is a crazy criminal in my crime by François Ozon which comes out next week. Not to mention his presence at the theatre, on view until February in The Cherry Orchard from Chekhov to the Odeon. Saturation? Certainly not, as the actress takes on different roles, moving from drama to comedy, always with talent and enthusiasm.
Are we directing Isabelle Huppert? Jean-Paul Salomé plays this Stradivarius like a lover, painting it with a dash of pungent red on powdered skin. The actress embodies an elegant, invested woman, trade unionist and secretary of the committee of a strategic European group. He gives her the role of an upright and obstinate observer, attacked and weakened. Alone, distant, she is also uncompromising. A coldness coupled with an aplomb that will persist after his attack. Led like a thriller, the film The Syndicalist does not warn less about the criminal actions of the State via companies where it is implicated. The news item has become a state affair, and today Areva is called Orano.
Gender : Drama
Director: Jean-Paul Salome
Actors: Isabelle Huppert, Yvan Attal, Marina Fois
Country : France
Duration : 2h01
Exit : 1st of March 2023
Distributer : The pact