Creative obsession gets a funny twist in Justine Triet’s “Sibyl,” which asks a question that has likely tortured many a wary therapy patient: what if all my personal drama was being used to fuel my therapist’s own dalliances in fiction writing? Margot, it seems, is about to find out, care of Triet’s latest film, set for a domestic debut September 11.
Per its official synopsis: “Sibyl (Virginie Efira), a jaded psychotherapist, abruptly decides to leave her practice to return to her first passion: writing. But her newest patient Margot (Adèle Exarchopoulos), a troubled up-and-coming actress, proves to be a source of inspiration that is far too tempting. Fascinated to the point of obsession, Sibyl becomes increasingly involved in Margot’s tumultuous life while negotiating her own demons.”
The film, Triet’s third feature and already her second collaboration with Efira, premiered at Cannes in 2019 and went on to screen at both the Toronto International Film Festival and the New York Film Festival in the following months. Now, it’s landing in the U.S. to enthrall a new audience. Distributor Music Box Films bills it as “a delicate balance between drama and acidic farce,” always an intriguing and entertaining combination.
In his Cannes review, IndieWire’s Eric Kohn wrestled with the film’s tangled threads, writing: “For its first two-thirds, the movie hovers between the elegance and eroticism of a shrewd psychological thriller. Sibyl’s old affair illustrates just how much she’s drawn to danger as a means of escape, and to that end, finds a clever parallel between her erotic and artistic desires. ‘Sibyl’ assembles the occasional meta-commentary on the pratfalls of storytelling in the 21st century … Trier’s story is a riotous sendup of the dangers facing narrative in an age of distraction. … The movie often struggles to balance its multiple strands, but it frequently lands on enthralling philosophical observations at the core of Sibyl’s uncertain trajectory.”
Music Box Films will release the film in New York and Los Angeles on Friday, September 11 at Film at Lincoln Center and Laemmle’s Virtual Cinemas, followed by other top markets throughout the U.S. Check out the newest trailer for “Sibyl,” exclusively on IndieWire, below.