Editor’s Notes: In the Name of My Daughter & Modern Family: The Complete Sixth Season are out on their respective formats September 22nd.
In the Name of My Daughter
In the Name of My Daughter (Cohen Media Group) focuses on a crime that has intrigued the French for over thirty years: the disappearance in 1977 of casino heiress Agnes Le Roux (Adele Haenel), a young divorcee who returns home to her mother, Renee (Catherine Deneuve), in Nice from Africa after a tumultuous five-year marriage, eager to start a new life. Renee, owner of a fancy casino in the south of France, is being pressured by the local mafia to turn over the casino to them. Agnes is drawn to Renee’s business advisor, Maurice (Guillaume Canet), an ambitious lawyer ten years older than she. The three form a complex threesome, with increasing consequences.
Though supposedly a crime thriller, “In the Name of My Daughter” is pretty tame. Much of the film is devoted to the mother-daughter relationship, though it’s never made clear why Agnes is resentful of Renee. There’s an interesting spin on the typical film noir femme fatale plot, with Agnes being attracted to a man who draws her into foul deeds.
Ms. Deneuve is lovely and elegant — a perfect fit as proprietor of a swank Riviera casino. The actress has aged gracefully and brings a huge helping of class to the proceedings with her imperious demeanor. Since Agnes is portrayed as high-strung and fragile, Ms. Haenel has the widest rage of emotions to play and nicely conveys Agnes’ multi-faceted personality.
Director Andre Techine has incorporated some beautiful locations and crafted characters that are not so easy to read. Though the pace could have been picked up considerably, the movie offers a fascinating look at a family against the colorful world of casinos and organized crime.
Blu-ray bonus features include a Q & A with actor Guillaume Canet and a theatrical trailer. The movie is in French, with English subtitles.
Modern Family: The Complete Sixth Season
Modern Family: The Complete Sixth Season (20th Century-Fox Home Entertainment) is a 3-DVD set containing all 24 episodes of the 2014-2015 season. This show has maintained its quality during its entire run, without ever falling into a rut — the bane of many sitcoms. The reason lies in the sharp writing and the show’s exceptional cast. The premise of a large extended, blended family interacting in each other’s lives has offered endless possibilities for humor.
In Season 6, newly wedded Cam (Eric Stonestreet) and Mitch (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) accustom themselves to the realities of married life, Phil (Ty Burrell) and Claire (Julie Bowen) find their marriage stressed by annoying new neighbors, a Thanksgiving dinner goes awry, and Claire’s online shopping. Meanwhile, a spy-camera drone wrecks havoc in Jay (Ed O’Neill) and Gloria’s (Sofia Vergara) backyard and a close call on the highway leads to amusing changes in various members of the Pritchett-Dunphy clan.
The series has received several awards, including five Emmys for Outstanding Comedy Series; four Emmys for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (two for Eric Stonestreet, two for Ty Burrell); two Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Emmys for Julie Bowen; and a Golden Globe for Best Television Series — Musical or Comedy. The show was conceived by Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan while sharing stories of their own “modern families.”
Bonus extras include the featurettes “Awesome Halloween,” “A Modern Thanksgiving,” “A Date With Julie,” “Modern Connections: The Making of an Episode,” and outtakes.