Auntie Danielle, supposedly in ailing health but in reality just a nasty old bitch, lives with a paid housekeeper who she regularly abuses. When the housekeeper dies falling off a ladder, ... See full summary »
Rene is a "ripou", a rotten cop who makes ends meet by accepting bribes, presents and free drinks from the people he should be putting in jail. When his partner retires, he must team up ... See full summary »
Lambert, a burned-out case, works the night shift at a gas station, rarely speaking, living alone, drinking. Bensoussan, raised in foster homes, now a small-time pusher for a bar owner ... See full summary »
Two friends, one a musician the other constantly depressed wander around Greece and France till they get to Paris without a penny to their name. Here they spend nights in the underground, ... See full summary »
A young boy's life in turn-of-the-century France. Marcel, witnesses the success of his teacher father, as well as the success of his arrogant Uncle Jules. Marcel and family spend their ... See full summary »
Louis, a nine-year-old boy from Paris, spends his summer vacation in a small town in Brittany. His mother Claire has lodged him with her girlfriend Marcelle and her husband Pelo while she's... See full summary »
Every holiday Marcel and his family go to their cottage in the Provence (France). He likes the hills in this region. Before they arrive at the cottage they have to walk about 5 miles. With ... See full summary »
In 1942, in an occupied Paris, the apolitical grocer Edmond Batignole lives with his wife and daughter in a small apartment in the building of his grocery. When his future son-in-law and ... See full summary »
Francis, the boss of a small plumbing supply company, is harassed by tax collectors, striking employees, and an impossible wife and daughter. His only joy is sharing lunch with his friend ... See full summary »
Baptiste 'Bebel' Lavalle and his classmates in Versailles' private high-school Louis XIV enjoy their carefree life enough to deliberately fail the exams, a national record of zero ... See full summary »
A great 90's dramedy about social issues, still relevant today
Gerard Jugnot is a very famous French actor, writer and director, whose fame and creativity both peaked in the late 80's-early 90's. "Une Epoque Formidable" (litterally: "Wonderful Times") is a very caustic tale of misfortune, midlife crisis, and social issues like homelessness in the France of the 1990's.
The film follows Michel (Jugnot) a forty-something average Joe, living in middle-class suburbs with his wife (Victoria Abril) and children. Hiding the fact that he lost his job and afraid of facing the consequences in an unemployment-ridden society, he ends up rejected by his wife, wandering endlessly in the hoodlums of Paris, hopelessly trying to put himself together in order to win back his former life. Facing humiliations and loneliness, he miraculously finds an helping hand with Toubib (the then great Richard Bohringer), Crayon (the late Ticky Holgado - last seen in "Amelie") and Mimosa (Chick Ortega). Together, they'll find a way to face the wind and even have a few good laughs, despite their condition...
This film is truly a gem among the (mostly) boring and uninspired French cinema of the past 20 years. It has scope, it's ambitious, with wonderful performances from everybody. And above all, it never forgets to be damn funny and witty. Of course there is some gross humour, and the direction is a little bland, but it's nothing compared to the humanity and refreshing lack of cynicism that transpires from this movie.
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