César runs a bar along Marseilles' port, assisted by his 23 year old son, Marius. Colorful characters abound: M. Panisse, an aging widower and prosperous sail maker; Honorine, a fishmonger ... See full summary »
Marius has left, signed up for a five year hitch on a ship bound for the Indian Ocean. In his few letters to his father César, he hardly mentions Fanny. When she finds she is pregnant, she ... See full summary »
Honoré Panisse is dying, cheerfully, with friends, wife, and son at his side. He confesses to the priest in front of his friends; he insists that the doctor be truthful. But, he cannot ... See full summary »
Someone I loved (Je L'Aimais) is based on the best-selling novel by Anna Gavalda. It's the story of Pierre (Daniel Auteuil), who takes his daughter-in-law, Chloe (Florence Loiret Caille) ... See full summary »
Florence Loiret Caille
There is no point in comparing it to the Raimu film
I've watched this movie twice now. It's really a very good film - but it is not at all the film with Raimu and Pierre Fresnay.
Nor, I suspect, was Auteuil trying to replicate the earlier version. In the 1930s masterpiece, directed by Alexander Korda, the characters, though all very real, often border on caricature, at least the men. They are all very much bigger than life, starting with César, and including Panisse, Escartefigure, etc.
That's not the take Auteuil took here. His characters aren't exaggerated, though certainly very real. You see that especially in some of the famous set pieces, like the card game and the scene where César teaches Marcel how to make a mandarin-citron. The exaggeration that made those scenes so outlandish, and so funny, in the Korda movie is absent here here. The scenes are played in a much more realistic manner.
Sometimes that's a problem. Escartefigue really doesn't work as a normal human being. He just comes off as dull, nothing like the unforgettable masterpiece in the Korda film.
But for the others - César, Panisse, and Marius - this approach shows us Pagnol's plays in a different light, and certainly a valid one. You have to pay more attention to see what's going on, to appreciate the fine acting. But it's worth the effort.
This movie will certainly never replace the Korda film. But it offers another way of presenting these by now mythic characters, and for that I say thank you.
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