TIFF 2019: Our Review of ‘My Zoe’

TIFF 2019: Our Review of ‘My Zoe’

My Zoe is about the titular seven year old child (Sophia Ally) who has two insufferable parents. Julie Delpy and Richard Armitage play the divorced couple who have equal custody of little Zoe. These conflictophiles spend the first few scenes of the film looking for ways to get sole custody.

The story becomes more complex as Delpy’s annoying character, Isabelle, finds Zoe unresponsive in her room. Isabelle and Armitage’s character James used to have embarrassing arguments face to face in modern Berlin. But now, all of those are taking place in the same hospital where Zoe is fighting to live.

Ally, as Isabelle and James’ daughter, leaves a good enough of an impression during early scenes. So much so that audiences can feel her presence as she becomes unconscious during her later scenes. It’s too bad that the adult actors in My Zoe all talk like they are robots.

The first two acts are insufferable but at least they seem like they belong within the film. During the third act however, Delpy, who also directed and wrote the film, introduces a scientific concept. This is one of the many cases where a writer swing for the fences and misses.

The third act, miraculously, can make us sympathize for Isabelle and her scientific cause. It even makes us think why everyone else around her thinks she’s wrong to pursue that thing she wants. But this third act can’t rescue us from the bad impression that the first two left us.

  • Release Date: 9/7/2019
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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watches movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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