By Ben Ralston
With opening cinematography that’ll leave you scrambling for Gravol, Veloma puts heavy emphasis on scenery. The camera rocks about, waves loom around you, and you can’t help but feel some sympathy for protagonist Philippe as he finds himself becoming “part of the sea.”
Having spent five months sailing around the world in the diverse company of his boat, his thoughts, and a whole swack of sea water, Philippe finds himself a little resistant towards settling back into the home life. Despite the love he feels toward his girlfriend–not to mention lust–and the connection he yearns to share with his growing son, Philippe soon finds himself overwhelmed with "land sickness" and sets sail once again. Soon after, the coast guard finds his sailboat drifting and abandoned, leaving the viewer in the skilled hands of actress Julie Depardieu, playing the emotionally shattered girlfriend. We follow her misadventure in the aftermath, as she brings a life insurance company to investigate hoping to prove that he has not died, he’s just "killed his former life."
Veloma is wonderfully filmed, showcasing camera skills that bring you that much closer to considering a one-way boating expedition, and situations that break clichés and pull you emotionally in ways that only French cinema can.
This is not a francophone version of Castaway, I promise.
This Contemporary World Cinema film plays Oct. 6 at 2:00 p.m. at the Globe Cinema.