Custody (also know as Jusqu’à la garde) posits the viewer in the fiery of domestic violence by way of its broken family of four. Having previously worked with filmmaker Xavier Legrand on the short Just Before Losing Everything (Avant que de tout perdre) certainly gave a certain nimbleness and insight to players Léa Drucker and Denis Ménochet in addressing full-on desperation found in separation. A riveting and tension-filled watch that I likened to a heated cage fight a la Kramer vs. Kramer, Legrand’s beginnings in cinema began with supporting acting gigs namely in Philippe Garrel’s Regular Lovers.
Legrand won two major awards at the Venice Film Festival and was part of a large contingent of stellar items that made the move from the Lido to a premiere at the Toronto Intl. Film Festival. I sat down with the filmmaker (and translator) for a Franglais type of conversation where we discussed the significance of the French title in French, how audiences might want to watch the short in reference to the feature, and the writing and blueprint of the film namely Thomas Gioria’s character of Julien. Kino Lorber acquired the film last October and will be releasing the film shortly.