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Happily married with a daughter, Marc is a successful real estate agent in Aix-en-Provence. One day, he has an appointment with a woman to view a traditional country house. A few hours later, Marc finally puts a name to her face. It's Cathy, the girl he was in love with growing up in Oran, Algeria, in the last days of the French colonial regime. Marc hurries to her hotel. They spend the night together. Then she's gone again. And Marc's mother tells him Cathy never left Algeria. She was killed with her father in a bombing just before independence... Written by
The Film Catalogue
"Lyrical, throughout gripping and perceptively romantic..."
French screenwriter, actress and director Nicole Garcia's sixth feature film which she co-wrote with French screenwriters Jacques Fieschi, Frédéric Belier Garcia and Natalie Carter, premiered in Morocco, was shot on locations in France, Spain, Algeria and Morocco and is a French production which was produced by producer Alain Attal. It tells the story about a man named Marc Palestro who has moved to Aix in Southern France with his wife named Clotilde who is a teacher and their 11-year-old daughter named Manouche. Marc is a real estate agent for his father in-law's company called Pays d'Aix and the day he goes with him to meet a female client named Mrs. Mandonato who works for a real estate investor and is looking for a new house, Marc's life changes.
Distinctly and precisely directed by French filmmaker Nicole Garcia, this quietly paced fictional tale which is narrated mostly from the two main characters viewpoints, draws an increasingly heartrending portrayal of an Algerian man who after having seen a woman who captures his eyes is reminded of his childhood sweetheart named Cathy Rivet whom he was separated from during the end of the Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962). While notable for its naturalistic and atmospheric milieu depictions, fine cinematography by French cinematographer Jean-Marc Fabre and production design by French production designer Thierry Flamand, this character-driven and narrative-driven story about a non-illusionary kind of love that has lived on in one person and been awakened in another person depicts two involving studies of character and contains a timely score by English composer Stephen Warbeck.
This conversational, somewhat literary and eloquent drama which is set in Algeria in the early 1960s and during a summer in France decades later where a theatre actress is reunited with a man from her past which she has vivid and affectionate memories of and a man almost loses sight of his family, is impelled and reinforced by its flashback narrative structure, subtle character development and continuity, a lingering and pivotal scene of a girl named Marie-Jeanne and the engaging acting performances by French actor, screenwriter and director Jean Dujardin and Canadian actress Marie-Josée Croze. A lyrical, throughout gripping and perceptively romantic mystery from the early 21st century.
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