Simon (Kacey Mottet Klein) lives with his older sister (Léa Seydoux) in a housing complex below a luxury Swiss ski resort. With his sister drifting in and out of jobs and relationships, twelve-year-old Simon takes on the responsibility of providing for the two of them. Every day, he takes the lift up to the opulent ski world above, stealing equipment from rich tourists to resell to the local kids down in the valley. He is able to keep their little family afloat with his small-time hustles and his sister is thankful for the money he brings in. But, when Simon partners with a crooked British seasonal worker, he begins to lose his boundaries, affecting his relationship with his sister and plummeting him into dangerous territory. -- (C) Adopt Films … More
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Critic Reviews for Sister
The movie takes a refreshingly low-key, observational approach to storytelling ...
"Sister" avoids sentimental indulgence. There's no room for wallowing in this spare, almost ascetic exercise ...
French-born director and co-screenwriter Ursula Meier balances the scenario's bleak, wrenching aspects with a stirring confidence in the redemptive power of love.
Seydoux perfectly captures the anger and self-defeat of ill-educated, hedonistic, man-chasing young women who live on the fringes.
The pair [Klein & Seydoux] artfully weaves the ties that bind, crafting something that is both fragile and tenuously hopeful.
Strong, pungent, snow-laden contemporary Swiss drama...Director Ursula Meier fills the film with unspoken desperation that is almost tear-inducing.
Scorn may give way to momentary solicitude, but Sister is by no means a tenderhearted morality tale.
One of those films that quietly gets under your skin - in the best possible way. It's a film about character and relationships. And its unpredictability is what adds the dramatic tension
The content gets grittier and grittier as the film progresses and some may be disappointed by the ending, which leaves us hanging - as if on a mountain ledge. But maybe that is the point. Performances are brilliant, though
A simple but emotionally laden slice-of-life drama that is at turns heartbreaking and hopeful.
Slow-moving to the point of being glacial, Meier's icy endeavour is just barely rewarding enough to warrant the effort required to sit through it.
For fans of Ursula Meier's last movie, the strikingly offbeat domestic drama Home, this act of auteur-on-auteur emulation may feel like a comedown. Yet it's still stirring work.
Strong cinematography, excellent performances, and a deft touch with how adulthood can be forced upon what should be carefree adolescence make it emotionally memorable without ever feeling manipulative.
A low-key, affecting story of dreams at odds with reality and crime sprung from necessity.
We come away relieved and somehow chastened, the same way we might feel after having our pocket picked by a true artist.
Audience Reviews for Sister
Really well done movie. I wanted to feel sorry for the pair of them, but I just couldn't, they were too unlikeable with their actions. But then part of me understood why they were both like that.
Very subtle film that does challenge you a little.
Gillian Anderson is barely in it. Not sure why she has top billing. Her character is really nothing here and could easily have been omitted.
Switzerland as you've never seen it before. Sure, there is the postcard image of a ski paradise against the backdrop of grandiose mountain tops. Luxury and adventure, for whoever has the wallet. But behind the picturesque facade dwells a contrast; a story from another reality, filtered through the daily life of the 12-year-old Simon and his older sister Louise.
She's the passive of the two: self-dismissed from her job and brazenly foul-mouthed. Disappearing every once in a while to meet an array of fleeting boyfriends. We recognize the archetype.
Simon, a miniature criminal, makes a living on stealing skiing gear from unsuspecting tourists. He is handy and self-taught; have become mentally adult far too rapidly. At some points also caught in the act, which manifests inter alia in a scene where he is lightly assaulted by one of his victims. In broad daylight, in front of lunch-eating guests. That no one steps in between when a fully-grown man beats him bloody in the snow, ought to say something about the Swiss perception on child abuse.
Bittersweet it is, however, to see how Simon and Louise yet allow themselves to smile, with misery hanging on their shoulders. Broken souls, whose background really spurs more questions than provide any satisfying answers. I wanted to know more about how it came to be this way. How it went from point A to point B. But the narrative mostly just scratches the surface. At any rate refreshing in its unforced approach, but more depth and less money quarrels and it could have gone from good to brilliant.
Nuanced and well-written, we nonetheless receive an earth-shattering twist which changes everything we've taken for granted about the characters' established relationships. Thought-provoking in its originality, about situations you know are out there, but are seldom depicted on celluloid.
Sister, in its essence, is mercurial love-hate dynamics on the slithery uphill of life. Where the precocious Simon doesn't just steal boots and goggles, but also our undivided attention. That we are furthermore treated to an appearance by "X-Files"-star Gillian Anderson, adds additional icing to this uniquely concocted pathos-cake.
Meier shows she can manage a sad subject with sensitivity, but it is Klein who completely shines as the adorable, charismatic young protagonist. However, the film doesn't seem to know how to end, and the two only English-speaking characters added to the story are superfluous.More
At the tender age of 12, Simon(Kacey Mottet Klein) is the man of the house and has all the responsibilities that go along with it. That has a lot to do with his older sister Louise(Lea Seydoux) not being to hold down either a job or a boyfriend. So, Simon travels up to a nearby ski resort where he steals anything that is not nailed down which he sells later to support them. While there, he finds an unlikely business partner(Martin Compston) and meets a friendly tourist(Gillian Anderson).
Even without much of a story to speak of, "Sister" is still a harrowing tale of survival on the edge. As such, sometimes it is a little hard to watch but in the end is quite worthwhile. That is set around a classic separation of the classes who only rarely meet on personal terms. But in this fictional world, things are rather topsy turvy, encapsulated in the enigmatic final shot and symbolized by a huge plot twist 2/3 of the way through that while maybe a shock is actually not all that surprising.
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