Two Days, One Night – Film Review

Carol Bowditch checks out the latest picture starring Marion Cotillard, in which a vulnerable woman is given one weekend to encourage her colleagues to give up their bonuses, which are being offered in exchange for her dismissal due to her ill mental health: 

The picture may lack extremes (especially the suicide attempt, which is calm and exercised with precision rather than a product of mania) but captivates through its duration, as Sandra faces the difficult task of making her co-workers exercise their moral complex. The greed of some prevails, with them questioning why she even bothers asking them to give up a grand of bonus money in a time of economic disadvantage in France.

The picture drags though as Sandra (Cotillard) has the same conversation with a dozen of her co-workers over the space of a weekend. Some are pleased with her bravery while others argue with the already remarkably fragile woman. This repetition grows quite tiresome after the tenth person is met and I was kind of wishing that I were in a more appropriate setting to check if anyone had liked the Instagram photo that I had popped up before entering the 10-seater screening room.

After Sandra has spoken to all members working for her nondescript job, we wait for a decision and her conclusive fate. We’re given it, but similarly, like the rest of the duration of the film, emotions neither reach highs nor lows and it makes for quite the anti-climax… not even… it’s just the completion of the 95-minute film length.

I opted to see Two Days, One Night because I am a massive fan of Cotillard (especially after Rust & Bone), avoiding reading any press (it did well at Sydney Film Festival, apparently), or even watching the trailer. My feelings of admiration towards the alluring French actor remain, but it really isn’t her strongest picture to date.

Two Days, One Night is released on November 6.



Words by Carol Bowditch