Pour le meilleur et pour le pire, la pandémie a engendré un certain micro-genre de drame intime, défini par sa petitesse – un casting restreint, un seul lieu, pas de figurants, des costumes minimes. Ses Trois Filles, du réalisateur Azazel Jacobs, ressemble à un film Covid. L’action est confinée à un appartement de Manhattan, vers lequel trois sœurs, interprétées par Carrie Coon, Natasha Lyonne et Elizabeth Olsen, reviennent pour régler les affaires de leur père mourant (Jay O Sanders) et lui dire au revoir. Les sœurs grattent presque entièrement l’écheveau de chagrin, de ressentiment, de soulagement et d’amour compliqué du film ; leurs relations sont, pour des raisons qui se dévoilent au fil des jours, tendues et glaciales. Les acteurs de l’ensemble incluent deux infirmières en soins palliatifs, la liaison d’une des sœurs et un voisin.

Not that this is a bad thing; death, especially of the slow and managed kind, is claustrophobic. Jacobs gamely captures the out-of-time emotional shearing and bizarre mundanity of palliative care, how the walls, memories, hours warp and metastasize around waiting for the inevitable. Characters regress, recollections diverge, old wounds fester. After 101 minutes, you will know the floor plan to this apartment, its weathered furniture and dens of privacy, like a familiar cocoon.

But it’s a long and uneven journey to that point. There seems to be an effort, on the level of performances and direction, to thoroughly differentiate the sisters – Katie (Coon) as the tightly wound, rigid planner, Rachel (Lyonne) as her slacker, black sheep foil, younger Christina (Olsen) as the cheery defuser. But the effect is so pronounced as to make the three seem like they’re acting in different movies. Coon’s Katie speaks in a patter of anxieties, condemnations and logistics with the manner of the stage. Olsen, in her first non-Marvel film role since 2018, seems pitched for quirky dramedy, her bright features reaching for the far edges of wide-eyed concern or forced zen. Maybe it’s my Poker Face bias, but Lyonne’s signature disarming, earthy frankness feels apt for a tight, colorful TV show; of the three, it’s her Rachel, a pothead who cared for their father and makes money on sports gambling, who feels fully formed.

As the sisters’ loose geography and timelines – Christina lives somewhere across the country, Katie somewhere across the city – begin to cohere, so too do the performances and the hefty distrust between Katie and Rachel. Azazel smartly wrings dramatic revelations out of the small work of death – Do Not Resuscitate orders, care schedules, the obituary, the family politics of making and sharing food. There’s a brisk enough pace to the build-ups and blow outs, when unsaid accusations and simmering resentments spill into dialogue, though it leans a little too heavily into the domineering/aloof dynamic between Katie and Rachel, a cycle of bitterness, attack and withdrawal that plays out one too many times to get the point across.

By the film’s second half, Olsen’s broad portrayal of a frazzled, over-compensating young mother narrows into something searing and potent, especially once her lacquered cheeriness cracks. But given the judgment Rachel faces from her sisters, particularly Katie, it becomes difficult to root for anyone in this tangle of grief and pride but Lyonne. And given His Three Daughters’ fidelity to the cold facts of dying, the final minutes makes a bold and uneasy logic leap that pulls on the heartstrings but feels too neat for a drama this lived in, for sibling bonds this spiky.

Still, there’s something winsome to the sisters’ hard-won acceptance, even if possibly temporary, even if contained to a single apartment. Azazel’s rendering of their temporary home lingers; the morning light on an old photo, an indented couch, dishes in the sink – these are the marks of living that, no matter how fraught the relationship, you miss when they’re gone.

Points importants de l’article :

  • Le film est un drame intime se déroulant dans un appartement new-yorkais et mettant en scène trois sœurs.
  • L’action se concentre sur les relations complexes et tendues entre les sœurs alors qu’elles s’occupent de leur père mourant.
  • Les performances des actrices principales sont inégales et parfois déconnectées, ce qui crée une dissonance dans le film.
  • Le réalisateur parvient à capturer avec réalisme les émotions liées à la mort et aux soins palliatifs.
  • Les révélations dramatiques se basent sur des détails pratiques et familiaux, créant ainsi des tensions.
  • La conclusion du film peut sembler trop convenue et tirer sur les émotions, mais elle offre une réflexion sur l’acceptation et la perte.