La Syndicaliste: access CINEMA releasing French thriller in Irish cinemas this June


Isabelle Huppert stars as Irish woman Maureen Kearney, a trade union leader who faced a campaign of intimidation after becoming a whistleblower in the French nuclear industry.

access>CINEMA will release the gripping corporate thriller La Syndicaliste in Irish cinemas from June 30th. Based on a non-fiction book by journalist Caroline Michel-Aguirre, the French-language film tells the extraordinary real-life story of Irish woman Maureen Kearney (played by Isabelle Huppert), a senior trade union representative-turned-whistleblower in a French nuclear power company.  

Maureen’s efforts to expose top-secret deals met with fierce resistance from powerful people in the company, the wider industry and even the French government. She also began receiving intimidating phone calls and other threats, warning her to back off. Maureen refused to back down, however, and continued working to bring the scandal to light and protect thousands of jobs. 

Her life was turned upside down, however, when she was violently assaulted in her own home. The assault prompted a police investigation, but – seemingly unable to identify a perpetrator – detectives subsequently accused Maureen of faking the attack. The Irish woman had no choice but to fight a long and arduous legal battle to clear her name. 

Maureen Kearney’s story is one that deserves to be told. The great Isabelle Huppert elegantly channels her real-life counterpart’s steely resolve in a compelling and nuanced performance.

La Syndicaliste is directed and co-written by Jean-Paul Salomé (Female Agents) and co-stars Grégory Gadebois, François-Xavier Demaison and Marina Foïs. 


Following successful runs at the Irish Film Institute and Triskel Arts Centre, the film will now screen across access>CINEMA’s network of film clubs and arts centres over the coming months. Currently confirmed screenings and ticketing links are listed below:

Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray – Monday 4th September, 2023

Riverbank Arts Centre, Newbridge – Monday 18th September, 2023

St John’s Theatre & Arts Centre, Listowel – Tuesday 10th October, 2023

Millbank Theatre, Rush – Tuesday 31st October, 2023

The Source Arts Centre, Thurles – Wednesday 1st November, 2023

Watergate Theatre, Kilkenny – Wednesday 22nd November, 2023

What the critics are saying: 

“You may never have heard of Maureen Kearney, but you won’t forget her after this” – Irish Independent ★★★★

“La Syndicaliste is a fascinating true crime drama that unfolds like a thriller” – Irish Examiner ★★★★

“A bravura performance from Isabelle Huppert” – Eye for Film ★★★★

“[Maureen Kearney is] played with an electric stillness by the great Isabelle Huppert” – Deadline

This film release was made possible with the support of the Creative Europe Programme – MEDIA