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Criterion Release: Two Days, One Night

August 25, 2015

By John Corrado

Two Days, One Night Blu-rayThis week, Two Days, One Night is being released on Blu-ray, through Criterion.  Sandra (Marion Cotillard) is a working class mother in Belgium, suffering from severe depression.  When she is unfairly fired from her job, with her coworkers voting in favour of getting a hefty bonus for themselves instead of keeping her on the payroll, Sandra spends the weekend tracking down her fellow employees, trying to convince them to rescind their votes.

The latest from master filmmakers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Two Days, One Night takes this deceptively simple premise and turns it into an emotional and utterly compelling human drama.  Filled with rich subtext, this is a deeply moving film about the small moral dilemmas that people face every day, and the unfairness of how financial problems can literally balloon out of control.

Having received a much deserved Oscar nomination for her fiercely powerful role earlier this year, Marion Cotillard is simply masterful here, never striking a wrong note in bringing this character to the screen, earning both our sympathy and utmost respect.  Although a relatively recent film, Two Days, One Night absolutely deserves its placement among the pantheon of greats in the Criterion Collection, a modern classic that already feels timeless.  My full review of the film can be found right here.

The Blu-ray has an extended interview with the Dardenne Brothers, an interview with Marion Cotillard and her co-star Fabrizio Rongione, and a featurette on the locations used in the film.  Also included is the Dardenne Brother’s 1979 documentary When Leon M.’s Boat Went Down the Meuse for the First Time, and another interview with the filmmakers about their earlier non-fiction work.  There’s also a video essay by critic Kent Jones, and a written essay by critic Girish Shambu in the package.

Two Days, One Night is 92 minutes and rated PG.

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