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Locarno Entry "At Ellen's Age" Anticipates Steven Slater.

Photo of Eric Kohn By Eric Kohn | Eric Kohn August 12, 2010 at 4:35AM

Locarno Entry "At Ellen's Age" Anticipates Steven Slater.

A fairly solid entry at the Locarno Film Festival competition, the German movie called "At Ellen Age" stars Jeanne Balibar as a soft-spoken woman on the verge of a mid-life crisis. A key plot point in the movie arrives when Ellen, a flight attendant, gazes wistfully out the window of a plane and then abruptly exits before it takes off. Sound like anyone you've heard about recently?

Now, I'm not suggesting that readers swept up in the sudden legacy of disgruntled flight attendant Steven Slater will find similar appeal in "At Ellen's Age," a slow-moving drama directed by Pia Marais that's mainly sustained by Balibar's performance. But it does provide a fairly insightful reason why someone in such a job might reach a breaking point, so maybe that's enough to make a real testament to our times. (How long until the PR folk working on "At Ellen's Age" play up this angle? I'm surprised they haven't already.)