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Film / ma sur !

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À ma sœur ! (For my Sister!), released in some English-speaking countries as Fat Girl, is a 2001 French drama film directed by Catherine Breillat.

Sisters Anais and Elena Pingot (Anais Reboux and Roxane Mesquida) are on a vacation at the seaside with their mother and workaholic father. Anais is 13 and Elena is 15. Elena is a vision of beauty, whereas Anais, while not by any means ugly, is also not by any means slim; hence the English title. Though Elena has not yet lost her virginity, she could do so at any time with any man she wanted; Anais is jealous and longs to have sex herself. She can only lurk, seething in the background, as Elena carries out a torrid affair with and eventually does lose her virginity to Italian exchange law student Fernando (Libero De Rienzo) in front of her.

The film is notable for its themes of teenage sexuality, graphic sexual scenes (there is one uncensored shot of Fernando putting a condom over his erect penis), and for its ending: the girls' mother discovers that Elena has had sex and rushes home to have her VD tested. Whilst they are staying the night on the road in their car, a thug breaks in, kills Elena with an axe, strangles the mother, and then pursues Anais into the woods and rapes her. Thus; her desire for sex is fulfilled, albeit through rape and at the cost of the life of the sister she both loved and hated.


A major theme in the film is whether it is better to lose your virginity to someone you love or to someone you don't.

Critical consensus would seem to hold that this is Catherine Breillat's best film.

This film provides examples of:

  • All Women Are Lustful: Neither Anais nor Elena are sixteen, yet constantly have sex on the brain.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: A VERY dark example. Anais thinks it's better to lose your virginity to "nobody" just so you can get it over with. She ends up getting raped by an unnamed axe murderer.
  • Big Eater: Anais eats more than anyone else, which several other characters comment on.
  • Completely Different Title: À ma sœur ! (For my Sister!), a title which reflects the sisterly relationship portrayed in the film, sometimes becomes Fat Girl in English, which focuses more on Anais as the protagonist.
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  • Downer Ending: Anais's mother and sister are murdered in a shocking and random act of violence, and Anais herself is raped. The End.
  • Dull Surprise: Anais's reaction to an axe murderer breaking the windshield and killing Elena is to continue chewing her snack and stare at the murderer with a dull expression. When the murderer moves on to strangle her mother, her expression doesn't change either and she simply gets out of the car. She is also fairly nonchalant about the ensuing rape, so much so that even the attacker seems caught off-guard.
  • Euroshlock: Graphic sex and a Downer Ending full of murder.
  • Foreshadowing: As Anais throws up on the side of the road during the car ride back home, Elena angrily wishes their mother was dead, and that she didn't care if she herself died too. When Anais tells her to speak for herself, Elena assures her that she has nothing to worry about, as she's not in the dead man (passenger) seat. Elena and their mother end up dying, while Anais, in the backseat, survives.
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Anais and Elena have a love-hate relationship and butt heads over sex and relationships.
  • Heavy Sleeper: Seriously, Elena and her mother are really slow on the uptake when an axe murderer breaks the windshield and starts attacking them.
  • Leave the Camera Running: As typical Euroshlock, there are plenty of long, static scenes.
  • Male Frontal Nudity: If you're too squeamish to see an adult guy's penis, don't watch the movie.
  • Mood Whiplash: Although it wasn't exactly light and fluffy before, the scene of Anais' mother and sister getting brutally murdered in their car was quite different in tone from everything up until that point.
  • Overprotective Dad: Anais's father is clearly suspicious of Fernando, and as soon as he learns he's given Elena a ring (which wasn't even his to give away, no less), he immediately has the girls brought home so that he can ascertain whether or not she's still a virgin. Not that she ever makes it home.
  • Potty Failure: Anais wets herself as the axe murderer kills her mother. It's about all the appropriate reaction she gets during the scene.
  • Rape as Drama: Anais ends up losing her virginity via rape at the end of the film.
  • Slice of Life: Until the last ten minutes of the film, it's all about the sisterly relationship between Elena and Anais and their views on love and sex.
  • Surprisingly Sudden Death: After an entirely Slice of Life plot, Anais's mother parks at a rest stop to get some sleep. Elena goes to the bathroom while Anais has a snack, and the two trade sympathies before Elena also naps. Then an axe murderer breaks through the window and kills both Elena and the girls' mother. No, really.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Anais throws up at the side of the road near the end of the film.

Alternative Title(s): Fat Girl


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