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LES GARDIENNES

Xavier Beauvois · France · 2017 · 138 mins · NR · French with subtitles
AwardsIMDbMetaCritic 82Rotten Tomatoes 97%

An intimate French epic, elegantly made and quietly emotional, this is a family story filled with characters whose lives we sink into, feeling the hope, the sadness, the sorrow and the joy right along with those on the screen. The rare wartime story in which women’s lives take center stage, it stars Nathalie Baye as a farm matriarch. The setting is World War I, in an area of rural France where all able-bodied men have gone to the front, leaving their wives to hold this traditional world together.

Director Xavier Beauvois (Of Gods and Men) is a quiet visionary who thinks stories of subdued emotional conflict are as good as it gets. Beautifully shot by Caroline Champetier in a part of France that has apparently not changed much in the last century, The Guardians uses the grace of the landscape as a constant…If you let it weave its spell, it won’t let you go.

–Los Angeles Times
“THIS IS A STRIKINGLY BEAUTIFUL WORK.” –Screen International
“ONE OF THE YEAR’S MOST AFFECTING LOVE STORIES.” –Village Voice
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