Watch Mina Tannenbaum
- 2 hr 4 min
Mina Tannenbaum is a French drama film directed by Martine Dugowson and released in 1994. It follows the lives of two lifelong friends, Mina and Ethel, as they navigate their way through adulthood and their changing relationship with each other. The movie takes place in Paris, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, as both women approach their thirties. Mina (played by Romane Bohringer) is a restless and impulsive writer, while Ethel (Elsa Zylberstein) is studying to become a dentist, despite her love of music and art. The movie opens with a scene of Mina and Ethel as children, playing together in their hometown of Strasbourg. The two are inseparable, and their shared love of creativity and storytelling forms the basis of their friendship. As they grow older, they continue to support and encourage each other, even as their paths begin to diverge. Mina is struggling with her writing, feeling blocked and uninspired. She works a series of odd jobs to pay the bills, including selling encyclopedias door-to-door and cleaning offices. She frequently visits her psychiatrist, who tries to help her cope with her depression and self-doubt. Ethel, meanwhile, is more focused on her career. She is determined to become a dentist despite her mother's objections, and spends long hours studying and practicing. She also falls in love with a musician named Vincent (played by Lorenzo Balducci), who shares her passion for art and music. As the movie progresses, we see the two women begin to drift apart. Mina becomes increasingly erratic and self-destructive, while Ethel becomes more absorbed in her relationship with Vincent and her studies. The two still see each other from time to time, but their interactions become strained and tense. Mina's mental health continues to deteriorate as the pressures of adulthood mount. She has a brief affair with a married man, and later attempts suicide. Ethel, meanwhile, struggles with balancing her career and her relationship, eventually choosing to prioritize her work over Vincent. In the final act of the movie, the two women reunite for one last night together. They reflect on their friendship and the paths their lives have taken, acknowledging the changes and growing pains they have experienced. This poignant scene serves as a reminder of the enduring power of friendship, even in the face of life's challenges and disappointments. Overall, Mina Tannenbaum is a thoughtful and introspective film that explores the complexities of female friendship and the pressures of adulthood. The performances by Bohringer and Zylberstein are excellent, conveying both the joy and frustration of their characters' journeys. The film is characterized by its honesty, sensitivity, and wit, and stays with the viewer long after the credits roll.