Who is hiding behind Christine, the news reporter who committed suicide during a segment on live television in the 1970s?
Film director Antonio Campos (Afterschool) reveals a brilliant woman with an unpredictable personality in this fascinating biopic that went on the fest circuit, including Toronto and London, and was nominated for Best First Screenplay (by Creative Control’s Craig Shilowich) at this year’s Independent Spirit Awards and Grand Jury Prize at last year’s edition of Sundance Film Festival. In the titular role, an almost unrecognizable Rebecca Hall (The Gift, Vicky Christina Barcelona) plays the hardly ‘approachable’ reporter in what could easily be the best performance of her career. Complete with a genuine retro feel, thanks to the incredible costume and soundtrack, and the amazing reconstitution of WXLT-TV studios), we are transported into the daily life of Christine before the events. With a lot of subtlety, the director hints at previous bouts of depression in her life and portrays her difficulty to socially interact with people around her. Christine is shown as a determined and passionate professional, encompassing an incontrollable intensity that could possibly be a tell-tale sign of mental distress. Be it her lack of love life or a close friend, we feel a constant malaise behind her eyes.
Shilowich – who did an impressive and extensive field work in order to bring Christine back to life– and Campos focus on giving possible reasons as to why Christine did what she did, instead of dwelling on the mystery naturally surrounding her action. Every scene feels like another drop filling a glass already about to drip. It is impossible to know which drop caused the glass to overflow, but eventually Christine couldn’t cope with things anymore. The infamous scene is filmed without falling into easy gore or sensationalism: it is cold, distant and far from being the morbid sight that could have been expected. Christine is the tale of a woman who had exceptional potential as a reporter, but was struggling with issues that no one, not least herself, knew how to handle at that time.
2017: Nominated for best first screenplay (Craig Shilowich) and Piaget Producers Award (Shilowich and Melody C. Roscher)
2017: Central Ohio Film Critics Association – Best actress (Rebecca Hall)
2016: Chicago International Film Festival – Best actress (Rebecca Hall)
2016: Women Film Critics Circle – Best Courage in Acting Award
Runtime: 119 min
Country: USA, United Kingdom
Direction: Antonio Campos
Screenplay: Craig Shilowich
Cinematography: Joe Anderson
OST: Danny Bensi, Saunder Jurriaans
Cast: Rebecca Hall, Michael C Hall, Tracy Letts, Maria Dizzia, J.Smith-Cameron, John Cullum, Timothy Simons
Genre: Biography, Drama
Subtitles: Iris C. Permuy
Contact: Great Point Media