Mia Hansen-Løve has become one of cinema’s finest crafters of intimately detailed character studies, which makes for a potent result when that character is played by Isabelle Huppert. She plays Nathalie, a Parisian philosophy professor experiencing multiple bumpy life transitions at once, including her husband (André Marcon) leaving her for another woman, the fading interest in her scholarship and struggles dealing with her needy, aging mother (Edith Scob). Hansen-Løve isn’t timid about allowing her stories to drift into tangents, which occasionally can make it hard to get a handle on where she's trying to take her story. But Huppert rewards a viewer’s patience by digging into the way Nathalie thoughtfully processes arriving at an unexpected point in her life, including great material with Nathalie interacting with a former student (Roman Kolinka) and his group of young political activists. “I think I’m too old for radicality,” Nathalie says at one point, but Things to Come finds lovely small drama in a woman’s radical act of re-inventing herself when all of her previous self-definitions no longer apply.
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