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Wild Reeds (1994)

Les roseaux sauvages (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 10 May 1995 (USA)
Trailer
2:50 | Trailer
In a village in the Southwest of France, 1962. Maite and Francois are 18 years old. They are friends, not lovers. In Francois's classroom, there are Serge, whose brother has just married to... See full summary »

Director:

André Téchiné
8 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Élodie Bouchez ... Maïté Alvarez
Gaël Morel ... François Forestier
Stéphane Rideau Stéphane Rideau ... Serge Bartolo
Frédéric Gorny Frédéric Gorny ... Henri Mariani
Michèle Moretti Michèle Moretti ... Madame Alvarez
Jacques Nolot ... Monsieur Morelli
Eric Kreikenmayer Eric Kreikenmayer ... Pierre Bartolo, the Groom
Nathalie Vignes Nathalie Vignes ... Irène, the Bride
Michel Ruhl Michel Ruhl ... Monsieur Cassagne
Fatia Maite Fatia Maite ... Aicha Morelli
Claudine Taulère Claudine Taulère ... Nurse
Elodie Soulinhac Elodie Soulinhac ... Colette, Girl at Party
Dominique Bovard Dominique Bovard ... Guard
Monsieur Simonet Monsieur Simonet ... Guard
Chief Officer Carre Chief Officer Carre ... Officer
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Storyline

In a village in the Southwest of France, 1962. Maite and Francois are 18 years old. They are friends, not lovers. In Francois's classroom, there are Serge, whose brother has just married to try to escape from the war in Algeria, and Henri, a pied-noir (Algerian-born Frenchman). Francois and Serge will have a homosexual relationship, but Serge wants to marry his brother's wife... Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

10 May 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Wild Reeds See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$807,775

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$807,775
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are many references in the movie to "The O.A.S.," in conversation, and overheard on radio and television newscasts. OAS - or Organisation armée secrète, literally "Organization of the Secret Army" or "Secret Armed Organization," was a French nationalist terrorist organization during the Algerian War (1954-62), which ended in independence for Algeria in July 1962, which was not only the time setting for this movie, but the Algerian War was also the background conflict that propelled much of the plot of this film. Using armed struggle in an attempt to prevent Algeria's independence, OAS's motto was "Algeria is French and will remain so" (L'Algérie est française et le restera). See more »

Goofs

One of the songs featured at the party which Maïté and François go to after the movie is "Barbara Ann" by The Beach Boys, which was recorded and released in the fall of 1965, a full three years after the 1962 time setting for this movie. See more »

Quotes

Maïté Alvarez: Women branded by men are like cattle waiting to be slaughtered.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Shorter TV version released under the title Tous les garçons et les filles de leur âge: Le chêne et le roseau (1994) (TV) See more »


Soundtracks

Smoke gets in your eyes
by Otto A. Harbach and Jerome Kern
Performed by The Platters
See more »

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User Reviews

Boy loves boy, but loses to girl in 1960's Provence
30 September 1998 | by Antonio-37See all my reviews

Gael Morel play the 18 year old Francois, a French schoolboy at a boarding school in Provence. The time is 1962, and France is at the height of the Algerian crisis. Just like America in 1968, all schoolboys are fearful of being sent to fight an unpopular overseas war as soon as they are of draft age.

Francois is gay, and falls in love with fellow student Serge, played by Stephane Rideau. Serge initially reciprocates his affection, leading Francois to assume that he is also gay.

But Serge falls for their teacher's daughter, Maite, who is also 18 years old, and chooses her over his boyfriend. Francois is heartbroken.

The other star of the movie is the soundtrack by Chubby Checker, with all of his '60's hits.

And the beautiful countryside of Provence also stars. Like most French movies, the pace is slow with long periods of inaction but beautifully photographed scenery. There are also some visually striking scenes of the boys cavorting in the river. This is different to American tastes, but nice in its own way.

The movie is good at handling complex feelings. The boys are confused as to their developing sexuality. The war in North Africa looms over their impending manhood. Friendships and allegiances change overnight. Death comes home for them as Serge's brother is killed in Algeria. Serge has to choose between a then difficult gay existence and a straight life with Maite running the family farm.

A similar movie is American Graffiti, which also deals with teenagers coming of age. But certainly not to the same depth, and without many of the complex issues of the Wild Reeds.


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