Cannes Film Festival 2022: The Five Devils (The Five Devils)
Cannes Film Festival 2022: The Five Devils | Review
May 24, 2022
From the first frame, the director Léa Mysius marks The Five Devils (his second feature) as a wicked force of visual creativity and style. Led by a solid cast of key actors, the film revolves around young Vicky (Sally Dramé). She lives at home with her swimming coach mother, Joanne (Adèle Exarchopoulos), and her firefighter father (Moustapha Mbengue), who are hanging in a loveless marriage. However, Vicky is no ordinary child. She has an almost supernatural sense of smell that allows her to detect the location of anything. Her sensory powers are so heightened, in fact, that she is able to create person-specific concoctions that allow her to relive her memories.
When Vicky’s aunt Julia (Swala Emati) arrives unexpectedly, the girl’s powers lead her to uncover the truth about Julia and Joanne’s past. In this coming-of-age affair, Mysius has crafted a pleasantly vibrant and quirky – albeit confusing – love story through time.
One of the first things viewers will notice about The Five Devils That’s how wonderfully shot it is: every frame pops with color and bursts with energy. Likewise, a playful, witchy soundtrack casts an infectious spell, instantly capturing audiences with its charming rapture. Plus, the praise for this movie doesn’t just go to its clean style. Beneath the surface lies a truly moving love story made all the more exceptional by the captivating portrayals of Exarchopoulos and Emati. All it takes is a drunken karaoke performance by Bonnie Tyler total eclipse of the heart to see how in love the couple are with each other, after all these years. Likewise, Vicky’s mature insight into these discoveries lends the storyline an extra layer of humanity.
However, as intriguing as this premise is, it is also flawed. There’s a big plot hole in why Julia is unable to recognize Vicky in the present day, although she may have seen her in the past – especially when those sightings were a big part of why she’s been there. is estranged from family in the first place. This elephant in the room is never addressed and only serves to raise more questions. Likewise, the romantic subplot involving his father’s past is all but neglected, and as a result, doesn’t get the same payoff the filmmaker was hoping for.
Although imperfect, The Five Devils is nonetheless a fun and unique coming-of-age tale of Mysius.
The Five Devils (The Five Devils) does not yet have a UK release date.
Read more reviews of our Cannes Film Festival 2022 coverage here.
For more information on the event, visit the Cannes Film Festival website here.
Watch an excerpt from The Five Devils (The Five Devils) here: