The first days of WWI. Adrien, a young and handsome lieutenant, is wounded by a piece of shrapnel. He will spend the entire wartime at the Val-de-Grâce Hospital, in Paris. Five long years, ... See full summary »
"A film about everything and about nothing" - Damien Odoul (director)
I saw the UK premiere of this film at the Institut francais in London. The showing was followed by Q&A with the director Damien Odoul who also plays one of the main characters in the film, Yves. The film is set on the estate of an old French château in the countryside and centres around an old dying man (played by Pierre Richard) who invites a few actors to amuse him. The film deliberately lacks any real plot (it has been described as Beckett-esquire by one critic) but does end conclusively. The film will make you laugh - largely due to the weird and wonderful characters who do out-of-the-ordinary things, and you will certainly get a sense of satisfaction from watching it.
In the Q&A with the director, he said that his aim was to try and dig deep and try to touch the innocence which lays at the heart of life. His favourite character in the film is Pipo - played by a friend who in reality lives in a psychiatric hospital and is not an actor at all. He is someone with a "simple mind" who sees, listens and understands. The innocence and simplicity that Odoul alludes to is one "avant la naissance" (before birth), at the very root of existence.
An excellent film.
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