Karine, a housekeeper played by Céline Sallette, has managed to hide a terrible secret throughout her professional life. In Brilliant, Sylvie Gautier confronts this mother of a 17-year-old son with a lie that could cost her dearly when her company is bought by a new boss and she is given important responsibilities. She can’t read.
Illiteracy fascinates the director who had already approached it in her short film Stupid in 2019. She delivers a committed film with comic elements that bring her heroines embodied by Camille Lellouche, Eye Haïdara, Souad Amidou and Julie Ferrier to life. Sisterhood is at the center of a story that describes the daily life of workers with difficult lives but whose dignity in adversity commands respect.
Moving portraits of women
“I like group films where the actors are not used to assert just one of them”, explains Sylvie Gautier in the press kit. She wanted her main character to never be seen as a victim and to find true solidarity with her colleagues. “For me, these girls are brilliant. They must be proud of themselves”, she says to explain the title of the film.
The pressure that the worker undergoes means that we quickly take her side, which makes the film very moving. Brilliant never play on the ground of misery. It is one of Sylvie Gautier’s strengths to have found the balance between good-natured humor and admirably accurate portraits of women.