Valley, a tale of friendship, love and violence
by Cristiana Anfossi
- Sophie Artus has made her first feature film, which is taking part in the Official Competition of Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival
Love, violence and friendship are the main topics addressed by Sophie Artus in her first feature film, Valley, which won two awards at the Haifa Film Festival last month and was included amongst the 18 titles selected for the Official Competition at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (which ended on 30 November – read the news).
David moves to a new town with his father and has to start all over again, in a new school, with new friends. He’s a quiet, shy boy who has lost his mother (who committed suicide), and uses music and literature to isolate himself from the world. He meets Josh, an arrogant bully who picks on David at first, but who's a good person deep down. This is because he is subjected to psychological and physical violence by his elder brother, and so he vents his anger on others. Linoy is their classmate, and the third member of the trio, who falls in love with David, causing tensions between the two friends, who are both in love with her.
The film is set at school, at home and in the woods. The music is distressing, and helps to magnify the tense atmosphere of the film, which results from the high degree of violence that will lead to a desperate act. It is a world in which adolescence doesn't exist, you are forced to grow up too quickly, and feelings such as love and friendship are the only way out. The images of violence are strong, but also interspersed with moments of friendship and love. This balance creates a deeply touching experience, and an honest and raw film.
Valley is one of the five Israeli productions that were in competition at Tallinn, and the movie was backed by the Israeli Film Fund.
(Translated from Italian)