Maria Into Life (2023)

  • Comedy
  • 1h 33m

The always-sensational Karin Viard (The Bélier Family) and Gregory Gadebois (Delicious) star in award-winning short filmmakers Lauriane Escaffre and Yvonnick Muller’s debut feature, an enchanting and beautifully crafted romantic comedy about a shy, unappreciated woman who finally allows herself to open up to life and love.

The kind-hearted, middle-aged Maria (Viard) works as a cleaner. Though highly devoted to her clients, her secret passion is writing poems on her daily commute, though she never shares them with anyone (least of all her indifferent husband of 25 years).

But when Maria joins the cleaning staff of Paris’ prestigious École des Beaux-Arts (School of Fine Arts), everything changes. Within the hallways and classrooms of the hallowed institution, she discovers an exciting world of creative expression, assisted in no small part by Hubert (Gadebois), the school’s eccentric, long-time custodian. Usually reserved and discreet, Maria finds herself torn by new emotions, and must decide how much of her true self she’s prepared to reveal…

Evocatively shot on location and expertly produced by Quad Films (The Intouchables, C’est la vie), it comes as no surprise that 13-time César nominee Viard positively glows as Maria. She and Gadebois are effortlessly charming, as is the film.