20 December 2019 | dbdumonteil
Verbena is drunk as an infusion.
Like Natalie Baye ,like a good wine ,Fanny Ardant gets better as she gets older ;and she does not always take the easy way :in "8 femmes" ,she played a lesbian (who kissed Catherine Deneuve) ,in "lola Pater " ,she portrayed a transsexual .....
Here she passes for "crazy " because she wants to live off the beaten track;but the first scene with the bailiff shows a woman who cannot follow the society's rules .
A woman full of contradictions,she has never really taken care of her son ,but without a moment's hesitation ,she adopts an abandoned child and heads for the Netherlands to broach drug-trafficking.
There are plenty of funny moments in the first half :Nina buying her illegal stuff , mistaking Rotterdam for Amsterdam (yes, it's Anne Frank's house!) , the meeting with the cops on the road (the wild boar and the vervain)....
Essentially a road movie,for Nina hits the road with her son (whose girlfriend she calls "the big fat Dutch cow") ,her protégé and a cat ),and along the way the comedy turns into drama....Not always for the best ,for Diane Kurys 's movie loses steam halfway through and sometimes falls into what the French call "théâtre de boulevard" and clichés (Alvaro ,Nina 's erstwhile lover turned gay , who may (or may not) be her son's biological dad).
But ,in spite of weaknesses in the screenplay ,Fanny Ardant is so irresistible she will win you over.