SELECTION – Life in a high school like no other, a horrific cruise, a hunt for Nazis or corrupt millionaires… Which series should you watch, or not, this week?
17/20 “Toulouse-Lautrec high school”, TF1, Monday January 9, 9:10 p.m.
With the exception of the short series Locker Rooms, disability has remained the blind spot of diversity on TV. A lack of representation that this drama dynamites on the daily life of students at the Toulouse-Lautrec high school in Vaucresson. This specialized establishment in Hauts-de-Seine, fully accessible and unfortunately unique in France, welcomes both able-bodied and disabled students. The designer Fanny Riedberger (En famille) completed part of her schooling there and was inspired by it to recount, with humor and abrasive frankness, the tribulations of Marie-Antoinette, Charlie, Corto and Maelle. First flirtations, harassment, resilience in the face of illness…
The protagonists who live this thankless age are mutts, vachards, dissipated. And give a lot of gray hair to the headmaster and his assistant, played by Stéphane de Groodt and Valérie Karsenti. Crossed by insolence and vital urgency, the TF1 series, which left the last La Rochelle festival with the supreme award, does not compromise on anything. The students are played by actors with disabilities, many of them high school seniors. The intrigues do not sweeten their anxieties or their difficulties. No false happy ending or misery in these six episodes which avoid the usual faults of fictions which transform the handicap into a life lesson.
15/20 “Hunters”, season 2, 8 episodes, Prime Video, from Friday January 13
This creation, one of the most audacious of the decade, returns for a second and final season. Born from the fertile brain of David Weil (The Twilight Zone) and directed by Jordan Peele (get-out), embodied by the immense Al Pacino, for the first time at the head of a series, Hunters is set in the New York of the 1970s. This fiction borrows from the comic book, the spy novel, the cape film and sword to deliver a mind-blowing dystopian-fantasy tale. That of the emergence in the shadow of the high towers of Manhattan, of a Fourth Reich made up of Nazis on the run that Meyer Offerman (Pacino) and his group of hunters must neutralize. After the rout, at the end of the first season, the group reformed and left, in 1979, in the footsteps of Adolf Hitler (yes, in this fiction, he is still alive and hiding with his wife, Eva Braun) in South America. These new episodes, by the yardstick of the first season, are both baroque and controlled.
14.5/20 “Leverage Redemption”, Warner tv and MyCanal, Thursday January 12, 8:55 p.m.
Noah Wyle will forever remain the inner idealist ofEmergency room. But Doctor Carter has grown and aged well. Since the end of the cult medical saga, the 51-year-old actor has shown a predisposition for adventure soap operas. As confirmed by his latest escapade, Leverage Redemption, a resurrection of a hit series from the early 2010s, he joins a band of crooks who steal from millionaires and the most corrupt bosses. A lawyer who regrets having been at the service of crooks, Harry Wilson is the recruit that was missing from a troop made up of a contortionist, a computer hacker, an explosives ace and an immoderate gabber scammer. To them, the high-flying breaks at the Casa de papel. Lighter, more forward-looking than the original series, this sequel unashamedly assumes its entertainment side. “That’s what attracted me to the project. Given the current context, I wanted something light, in which the spectator can forget his problems and those of the planet instead of seeing them constantly put in front of his nose, “confided Noah Wyle during his visit to Paris. . In Harry Wilson, the native of Los Angeles even says he finds the same sensitivity as in Carter: “Two characters feeling like fish out of water and sinning by excess of confidence. »
13.5/20 “Copenhagen Cowboy”, Netflix
Trapped by the pandemic in Denmark, Nicolas Winding Refn took advantage of his return to his native land to concoct a hypnotic, supernatural and violent dive of which he has the secret. As in Drive and Only God Forgives, neon light is conducive to dreams and hallucinations. She lights up Miu in her quest for revenge. Almost mute, the androgynous young woman, who never takes off her blue tracksuit, has the reputation of being a lucky charm. This makes her the totem and executioner of the dirty work of Copenhagen’s most fearsome criminals. But not sure that this superpower is enough to overcome his sworn enemy, Rakel, played by Nicolas Winding Refn’s daughter, Lea Corfixen, who is taking her first steps as an actress in front of her father’s camera. This super-heroic and feminine odyssey is both a summary and a turning point in the filmography under testosterone of the director who is as obtuse and abstract as the David Lynch of Twin Peaks. There remains the presence of Angela Bundalovic, enigmatic Miu. The grace of this former dancer is a light in the night.
20/13 “The Rig: In the mist of the abyss”, Prime Video
Want a dose of chills? You can let yourself be tempted by this horrific camera which will recall, according to your references, The thing, by John Carpenter, or the emblematic episode of X-Files, Arctic, in which a prehistoric parasite infects and drives scientists at a polar station insane. In this English series, the open-air prison is an oil drilling platform in the open North Sea. Its occupants lose all means of communicating with the outside when a mysterious fog rises. A volcanic ash shower follows. Visions and strange incidents bring down the employees. Paranoia sets in. The disagreements too. So should we stay or go? As anarchy and violence rumble, a race against time begins to find the source of its strange natural phenomena. In the credits of this thriller with an ecological dimension, appears the veteran of Game Of Thrones Ian Glen.
13/20 “Blanca”, season 1, 6 episodes, M6, Saturday January 14, 9:10 p.m.
She loves dancing in the rain, listening to jazz, her dog Linneo, the sound of the surf, short and flashy clothes, the city of Genoa and many other things. Blanca is blind, unbeatable in “holophony”, that is to say, she hears what no one else can hear. A gift that first opened the doors to the archives of justice, then those of a police station as a consultant. She takes her first steps there under the orders of a bellowing and cantankerous commissioner (the theater actor Enzo Paci) and a captain who is too handsome to be honest (Giuseppe Zeno). Italian production inspired by the work of Patrizia Rinaldi, presented at the Venice Film Festival in 2021, Blanca did very well on Rai Uno. It is distinguished by the talent of its actress (Maria Charia Ginaetta) and her uninhibited evocation of disability in a society that is still very insufficiently adapted to it.
7/20 “The Best of Us”, season 1, 4 episodes, France 3 and France.TV, Tuesday January 10, 9:10 p.m.
One, then two, then three murders, in a high mountain resort. The plot begins with the discovery of the body of Abel Guérin, a high-level biathlete, on the training ground. Who ? How ? Why ? Is there a Cain? Awa Sissiko (Mariama Gueye, discovered in Funny), a young captain of the gendarmerie, is mandated to support Lieutenant Salvi (Nicolas Gob). The pair gradually sheds light on all that high-level sport hides in terms of excess, pressure, rivalry, suffering and excesses. The actors do their best without lines of dialogue worthy of the name… Spectacular succession of mountain shots, white light, black rocks, ghostly fir trees… The image is beautiful but the viewer is bored by the sequence of situations seen and seen in so many detective fictions. In short, a series whose memory will melt like snow in the sun.