ON THE EDGE
Nicolas Peduzzi / France / 2023 / 93 min / World Premiere
A young doctor with an exemplary humanist spirit fights a brave battle to hold together the run-down Paris hospital where he works – and to hold his patients together in the process.
Things are busy at the Paris hospital where young psychiatrist Jamal and his colleagues work. The place is run down, the staff are exhausted, budgets are constantly being slashed. You know the story, but you’ve rarely seen it conveyed as engagingly as in ‘On the Edge’, which employs a handheld camera and meaningful, artistic interventions to observe the daily routine at the psychiatric ward. The deeply sympathetic Jamal is an everyday hero with an exemplary, humanistic disposition, for whom the most important prerequisites for mental health – and for a healthy society in general – are good relationships with other people. He puts his philosophy into practice by listening patiently, giving good advice and organising theatre exercises based on Molière. Realism and idealism, however, are in balance for the young doctor, at least as long as the institutional framework holds up. Nicolas Peduzzi’s new film is a vital, organic and urgent report from inside the institution of psychiatry, and a reminder to take care of ourselves and each other.