If you enjoy intense medical dramas, “Heal the Living,” directed by Katell Quillévéré and showcased at this year’s Rendez-Vous with French Cinema series, may be for you. A young man is left brain dead after a car accident and his grieving parents must decide whether to allow an organ transplant for someone badly in need of a heart.
The film proceeds to take us into the process of arranging for transplants, involving both the donor and the needy recipient. We go right into the operating room to follow the surgical details. This is especially for those who have the stomach and nerves for such a candid film, but for those who do, this is a rewarding experience that is both dramatic and educational.
The victim is played By Gabin Verdet, the recipient by Anne Dorval. We also meet the victim’s grief-stricken parents, played by Emanuelle Seigner and Kool Shen. The film reveals how in such situations decisions must be made under pressure in order to have a successful transplant.
The direction is consistently scalpel-like, with attention to detail and the surgical procedures are depicted with precision, which makes the film all the more effective on that score. This is definitely a fascinating film that is different from the usual. A Cohen Media Group release. Reviewed April 14, 2017.