Archive of films Fidelio: Alice’s Journey / Fidelio, l’odyssée d’Alice

2014, 95 min

Section: Variety Critics’ Choice
Year: 2015

Alice’s voyage on a cargo ship populated by an all-male crew transforms into a young woman’s journey toward self-awareness, with a nod to self-confident womanhood. In no way a treatise on feminism, the film captivates with its bracing tone, unique setting, and edgy performance by its female lead.


Anchored by a courageous lead performance, this emotionally complex debut chronicles a sexually liberated sailor’s voyage of self-discovery aboard an old freighter, where she fights for respect among the randy crew – including the handsome captain, with whom she shares a romantic past – while her faithful partner anxiously awaits her return. A metaphorical mermaid, Alice seems to become a different person at sea, toughening her skin to survive for weeks at a time as the lone female assigned to a vast cargo ship. Though women are too seldom allowed to be the proactive agents of desire in other movies, Alice doesn’t exist merely to excite male characters. We experience the movie through her eyes, juggling the temptations put before her, pining for the partner she left behind and dealing with the consequences of her actions. It’s a refreshing depiction set in a truly unique setting.

Peter Debruge

About the director

Lucie Borleteau

Lucie Borleteau (b. 1980) studied film prep in Nantes, taking a master’s from the Université de Paris VIII (2004). She has acted in a number of roles in film and theater, continuing in film as a producer, assistant director (on Arnaud Desplechin’s A Christmas Tale / Un conte de Noël, 2008), collaborating screenwriter (with Claire Denis on White Material, 2009), and art director. Before creating her first feature Fidelio: Alice’s Journey, nominated for the best first film César, she shot several short and medium-length movies.


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About the film

Color, DCP

Section: Variety Critics’ Choice
Director: Lucie Borleteau
Screenplay: Lucie Borleteau, Clara Bourreau
Dir. of Photography: Simon Beaufils
Music: Thomas De Pourquery
Editor: Guy Lecorne
Art Director: Sidney Dubois
Producer: Marine Arrighi
Production: Apsara Films, Why Not Productions
Coproduction: Arte France Cinéma
Cast: Ariane Labed, Melvil Poupaud, Anders Danielsen Lie
Sales: Pyramide International


Agathe Mauruc

Sales Agent


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