Night Ride / La nuit venue
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Ex dj and composer Jin is an undocumented immigrant in Paris, forced to work for an illegal and exploitative taxi firm until he has paid off a debt for his passage out of China. He sees life through the windows of his car at night, and through the transient talk of his passengers - the oppressive interior of his taxi is an effective metaphor for his situation. In three weeks, Jin’s debt will be paid and when he encounters Naomi, a curious young stripper in need of a driver she can trust, an exit plan begins to take shape. But for Jin, the danger is only just beginning.
Frédéric Farrucci’s first feature is a modern film noir in its moody depiction of an epoch defined by inequality and corruption. He has chosen to focus on life at the margins of society, feeling that Chinese immigrants in France have been underrepresented in film. Farrucci addresses the growing prevalence of the ‘gig economy’, as well as the vulnerability of immigrant workers to gangs that profit from de facto slave labour. In his commitment to authenticity, Farrucci has cast many first-time actors, including Guang Huo, who plays Jin with a streetwise boyishness. The urgency of Jin’s music, composed for the film by electronic artist and producer Rone, hints at his restrained energy and talent, as well as the flutters of nerves that Huo portrays so subtly. The music also reflects the visual world of the film; the bright, thrumming repetition of the soundtrack representing the flashing street lamps of a sleepless city. Cinematographer Antoine Parouty often manages to turn the mundane into something entrancing - the way the lights travel across Jin’s windscreen, the fluorescence of police cars and the clubs he goes to, lurid and alluring.
“An astonishing and intoxicating first film” - Christophe Brange, Abus de Ciné.
”…an originality that gives goosebumps…” - Élie Castiel, KinoCulture Montréal.