The Thorn In The Heart

After the mind-bendingly brilliant Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind and The Science Of Sleep, the arrival of a new Michel Gondry film, The Thorn In The Heart, is usually cause for celebration.

It’s a disappointment, then, that documentary The Thorn In The Heart is so boring.

A deeply personal homage to his aunt Suzette, this will enthral the Gondry house-hold, but it’s difficult to fathom why the director thought anyone else would give a damn.

Moving at a pedestrian pace, Gondry takes Suzette to the places in the French countryside where she worked as a teacher for 30  years. She meets up with former colleagues and pupils who sing her praises and Suzette recalls the difficulties of teaching in buildings placed perilously close to roads.

Gondry also focuses on his aunt’s strange relationship with her son Jean-Yves, who is left in a state after his father dies. With the director failing to flesh out some of the more interesting aspects of Suzette’s life – the fact that she taught Algerian refugees or, at times, used vicious ways to control her pupils – The Thorn In The Heart soon becomes a pain in the behind.


GOOD FOR: Those who can sit still.

Watch The Thorn In The Heart trailer.

– Pierre de Villiers