Paul is a sweet man-child, raised - and smothered - by his two eccentric aunts in Paris since the death of his parents when he was a toddler. Now thirty-three, he still does not speak. (He ...
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Paul is a sweet man-child, raised - and smothered - by his two eccentric aunts in Paris since the death of his parents when he was a toddler. Now thirty-three, he still does not speak. (He does express himself through colorful suits that would challenge any Wes Anderson character in nerd chic.) Paul's aunts have only one dream for him: to win piano competitions. Although Paul practices dutifully, he remains unfulfilled until he submits to the interventions of his upstairs neighbor. Suitably named after the novelist, Madame Proust offers Paul a concoction that unlocks repressed memories from his childhood and awakens the most delightful of fantasies. Written by
Madame Proust helps Paul remember his childhood using madeleines dipped in herbal tea. Marcel Proust's most famous work, Remembrance of Things Past, begins with involuntary memory brought about the same way. See more »
Paul is in his thirties, he is mute having seen his parents die when he was but two. Since then he has been brought up by his fabulously eccentric aunts and has become something of a virtuoso on the piano. Then a fascinating neighbour tells him that she can help him by using a concoction of herbal tea.
He soon starts to see this Madame Proust regularly and starts regression therapy of sorts. She says that 'you can drown bad memories in a flood of tiny joys' which is sage advice indeed. The film deals with the cycle of life, the past and a host of human issues.
What unfolds is a beautiful film in terms of style and sentiment about his life and those around him, with so much thrown in that it seems to be endlessly inventive. Guillaume Gouix as Paul and Attila (his wrestling father) is superb even more so when you consider that he is unable to speak. Everyone plays their roles to the limit and no one goes over the top to lose believability. This is just a wonderful film with music, taxidermy, tree hugging and a whole lot of love besides one for French film fans and for those who like something a bit different, but in a really nice way.
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