A Thousand Times Good Night – film review

If a paparazzo is a photographer without a conscience, what is its opposite? Mamarazzo? If so, Juliette Binoche plays one in A Thousand Times Good Night: a holy-mother shutterbug set on doing good works across the globe. Her photo-crusadings in the Middle East, Kenya/Sudan, Sellafield and elsewhere are paraded for our souls’ improvement in this pious, stodgy Euro-pudding directed by Erik Poppe.

Main subtext drama: Binoche’s crises of choice, lived cyclically, between being a good mother to two girls and risking life as a camera-festooned warrior – Canon to the right of her, Canon to the left – for world peace and understanding. Every theme and thesis is italicised. We aren’t trusted to probe them with our own minds. The preaching is accompanied, for extra emphasis, by treacly sacerdotal music.

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