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The Last Mitterrand (2005)

Le promeneur du Champ de Mars (original title)
A young journalist (Lespert) helps the French President compile his memoirs.

Director:

Robert Guédiguian

Writers:

Georges-Marc Benamou (book), Georges-Marc Benamou (scenario) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michel Bouquet ... Le Président
Jalil Lespert Jalil Lespert ... Antoine Moreau
Philippe Fretun Philippe Fretun ... Docteur Jeantot
Anne Cantineau Anne Cantineau ... Jeanne
Sarah Grappin Sarah Grappin ... Judith
Catherine Salviat ... Mado
Jean-Claude Frissung Jean-Claude Frissung ... René
Philippe Le Mercier Philippe Le Mercier ... Fleury, le garde du corps (as Philippe Lemercier)
Serge Kribus Serge Kribus ... Riou, le chauffeur
Jean-Claude Bourbault Jean-Claude Bourbault ... Le libraire
Grégoire Oestermann ... Garland
Béatrice Bruno Béatrice Bruno ... Thérèse Manicourt
Philippe Lehembre ... Chazelles
Istvan Van Heuverzwyn Istvan Van Heuverzwyn ... Deletraz
Rémy Darcy Rémy Darcy ... Ladrière
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Storyline

A young journalist (Lespert) helps the French President compile his memoirs.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Pathé [France]

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

16 February 2005 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Last Mitterrand See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,979,988
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The TGV seats decoration (mainly the TGV logo on the head rest) was not the one used when Mitterand was President. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Grey but Colourful Film
15 September 2005 | by frankiehudsonSee all my reviews

This is a fascinating little film about the last few months in the life of Francois Mitterrand (Michel Bouquet), president of France 1981-95, and his relationship with a young man, Antoine Moreau (Jalil Lespert), who has been commissioned to write his life story.

Bouquet is, quite simply, phenomenal as Mitterrand; his physical resemblance is uncanny and his mannerisms and speech are spot-on. It is a delight to see the way he takes you into the heart and soul of a quite controversial figure in post-War French politics; Bouquet portrays the way that Mitterrand seemed to genuinely retain his socialist beliefs, right up until the 1990s. He visits a closed mine, the scene of a tragedy many years before which cost the lives of forty miners, to make a moving and rousing speech on the plight of French workers and the accomplishments of the socialist party in France (minimum pay, paid holidays, shorter hours, etc.). There is fine language and rhetoric but also genuine feeling, delivered in an awesome performance by Bouquet.

Mitterrand had a great rivalry with Charles de Gaulle, and this is given a lot of time in the film. Also, Lespert is keen to delve into the murky past of Mitterrand during his service in Vichy under Petain; you get the feeling there's a lot more to find out here, something Lespert discovers in his secret trip to the infamous spa town.

It seems pointless, the little sideline of Lespert's personal life, time that could be better spent on Mitterrand's personal life, which is totally absent from this film. I'd like to have seen a lot of archive film: Mitterrand and Kohl meeting at Verdun, for instance.

Mitterrand reflects on modern politics and the great advances made by modern France: for example, the modern transport system (we see Mitterrand travelling by the modern TGV train, the envy of the world).

This is a fascinating film for any Francophile. It is a grey landscape - particularly Mitterrand's last visit to his home town and the beach nearby - but that is politics. Highly recommended.


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