TIFF 2016 Movie Review: PLANETARIUM (France/Belgium 2016)

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2016. Go to TIFF 2016 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

planetarium_poster.jpgPLANETARIUM (France/Belgium 2016) **
Directed by Rebecca Zlotowski

Starring: Natalie Portman, Lily-Rose Depp, Emmanuel Salinger

Review by Gilbert Seah

PLANETARIUM is beautifully shot period piece on the lives of two sisters who care too much for each other.

The setting is Paris in the 1930s, where two sisters, American spiritualists Laura (Natalie Portman) and Kate Barlow (Lily-Rose Depp), are winding up a world tour. Seemingly adept at communicating with the dead, the women are somewhat less experienced with the business of the living.

Nevertheless, their astonishing exhibit of apparently supernatural powers piques the interest of powerful French film producer André Korben (Emmanuel Salinger), who retains their strange talents for his wildly ambitious new film project. Laura and Kate are soon swept up in a scheme that, fusing art and the occult, portends a dark shadow soon to be cast over all of Europe.

The film is better than it sounds.

Portman inhabits her role similar to the one she did in her directorial debut A TALE OF LOVE AND DARKNESS. But director Zlotoskski’s film feels very detached and one can hardly feel sympathetic for the sisters or even for the film producer. All pretty things aside, the film is quite the bore.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yV3k-L10A2M

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