CRITICISM / FILM OPINION – For her first feature film, Noémie Lefort focuses on a true story: her own. With “My Heroine”, she tells the semi-autobiographical story of her youth, when she tried to get in touch with Julia Roberts.
My heroine : a crazy true story
For her first feature film, Noémie Lefort has decided to offer a semi-autobiographical story. With My heroine, she replays one of the anecdotes of her youth. Indeed, when she was only twenty years old, and was studying cinema at a university in Rouen, Noémie Lefort directed a short film entitled Calling Julia Roberts.
With this little film, she sought to get the attention of an international star: Julia Roberts. The story of his short film told how a young girl (herself) wanted to pass on his little film to him. And on a whim, Noémie Lefort decided to go to New York herself, to meet his idol.
Worn by Chloé Jouannet as Alex Troffel (Noémie Lefrot’s alter ego), Pascale Arbillot as her mother and Louise Coldefy as her aunt, My heroine tells the fictionalized journey of the young French student who wanted to meet Julia Roberts. History is obviously transformed. Here, the character of Alex has the script for a feature film to submit to the American actress. So she does everything to approach him and tell him her story.
One feel good movie endearing
Noémie Lefort signs an endearing work, full of spontaneity and good feelings (which here remains positive). A little feel good movie overflowing with kindness – especially via the characters of the mother and the aunt. My heroine is even a real recovering from depressionbecause this New York trip is funny, warms the heart, and above all makes you want to join this amazing generational trio.
The story is sometimes so crazy so we wonder what is the true from the false. Which part is romanticized? Which part is modeled on reality? Difficult to see clearly, but it does not matter. It even adds a magical force in the footage, as if anything were possible. As if nothing could stop young Alex and her thirst for cinema.
In this, My heroine also wears a message of hope for moviegoers. A note of encouragement for all budding artists who bide their time in the shadows. Noémie Lefrot obviously tells us to believe in her dreams, to give ourselves the means for success, and that luck smiles on the daring, even on those who decide to meet Julia Roberts. The film also reminds us that we must not never forget to have funto love others, and to do things in a communicative good humor.
A few shots but we don’t care
My heroine can also count on captivating characters. The mother, carried by Pascale Arbillot, in great shape, is a solid comedic figure for the feature film. Worried, a little lost, not speaking a word of English, she offers some welcome humorous springs. Finally, the film is also, of course, aimed at to Julia Roberts fans. Noémie Lefort does not forget to pay tribute to him and conceals here and there references of all kinds to the international actress.
Unfortunately, My heroine does not resist all stereotypes. Obviously, some sequences do not work completely. For example, the scene where Alex has to meet Théa De Sousa (Zoé Schellenberg), in charge of read the scripts of Julia Roberts and to make index cards of them, is a pure cliché. A sequence where the young girl misses her chance to meet Thea because of a bogus revelation, which works more like a screenplay pirouette only as a credible event.
Finally, we also regret a falsely meta conclusion, rather gratuitous, and too marshmallow with a cutesy and superficial aesthetic. It prevents that My heroinedespite its few flaws, is a honest proposal with its public. A charming work in honor of the seventh art and of Julia Roberts.
My heroine by Noémie Lefort, in theaters on December 14, 2022. Above the trailer. Find all our trailers here.