Romain is a very successful fashion photographer who's diagnosed with terminal cancer. He copes by being cruel and nasty to those he loves, until a visit with his grandmother changes his outlook. But, his boyfriend's moved out, now what?
Romain, 31, a photographer, learns that a malignancy may kill him within a few months. Decisions: treatment? work? how to tell his lover and his family. He remembers the sea and himself as a child. He stares in the mirror. He's cruel: facing death, he pushes people away - what's the point? He visits his grandmother to tell her; on the way, he chats briefly with a waitress. He looks at old photos, visits a childhood tree house. He takes pictures. Returning from his grandmother's, he stops for food and sees the waitress, Jany, again. She makes a request. He returns to an empty flat - his lover has left. Can Jany's proposition give him a way to move past self-pity? Written by
Ozon is a strange figure. Strange in a sense that actually makes him normal: sometimes controversial, sometimes authentic, but always a great analyst of the emotion's spectrum.
It becomes clear really early that the film will be more of a contemplative portrayal of death than a daring fight lead against it. And sometimes it's better that way, to take things as they come. Thirty one year old Romain isolates himself from his family and friends and deals with several stages of the whole "accepting death" experience. A so dreaded experience. Consequently, the film is distant and may seem tedious at times, but all the means serve their purpose.
"Le temps qui reste" (gorgeous title, I feel obliged to emphasize this) is a difficult film: homosexuality, solitude and death are themes which few can bear light-heartedly. Still, Romain's process of severing himself from himself is intriguing at all times and the film's final sequence is of a most sincere impact. It's about adapting to the idea of dying in a glacial modern society.
We are generally alone in this world and all we have is our family. And if we lose that, we are left with thoughts, never to be forgotten. Le temps qui reste.
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