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Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2017: #38. Martin Provost’s The Midwife

The Midwife

Director: Martin Provost
Writer: Martin Provost

French director Martin Provost has consistently crafted strong, prominent roles for women (his first two titles featured Carmen Maura), but he achieved significant acclaim with this third film, 2008’s Seraphine, which won 7 of its 9 Cesar nominations (including Best Film and Actress for Yolande Moreau). Though 2011’s The Long Fall (featuring Moreau and Edith Scob) never received US distribution, he would receive strong notices again for Violette (2013), another historically based drama featuring compelling performances from Emmanuelle Devos and Sandrine Kiberlain. For his latest project, The Midwife, he unites France’s two greatest Catherines, Deneuve and Frot. Provost wrote the narrative, which concerns a titular woman who must contend with the re-appearance of her late father’s ex-wife, who disappeared suddenly three decades ago.

Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Catherine Frot, Olivier Gourmet

Production Co./Producer(s): Curiosa Films, France 3 Cinema, Versus Production.

U.S. Distributor: Right available.
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Release Date: Provost’s two major international hits Seraphine and Violette both premiered at TIFF, but considering the cast and French distribution company Memento, we expect to see The Midwife (currently in post production) mark the director’s first appearance at Berlin or Cannes.

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Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is IONCINEMA.com's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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