From his childhood in Poland to his adolescence in Nice to his years as a student in Paris and his tough training as a pilot during World War II, this tragi-comedy tells the romantic story ...
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From his childhood in Poland to his adolescence in Nice to his years as a student in Paris and his tough training as a pilot during World War II, this tragi-comedy tells the romantic story of Romain Gary, one of the most famous French novelists and sole writer to have won the Goncourt Prize for French literature two times.Written by
Watched it on a recent flight to Paris and glad that I did since I probably wouldn't have paid to see it (not the biggest Gainsbourg fan) and would've missed out on a modern classic. The two main characters in the film, the mother (Gainsbourg) and the son (Niney) carry the film due to the inspired performances of the actors playing those roles. Gainsbourg, in particular, gave a finely-tuned, nuanced performance that perfectly captured the extraordinarily devoted yet overbearing character of Nina; I'm now a big fan! Also inspired were the cinematography and the breathtaking dogfight scenes, which were probably the best I've seen in any war film. The first half of the film does meander a bit and the pace of it gets a bit patchy (hence the 9 stars instead of 10) but the second half more than makes up for it. I didn't know the film was based on a true story (i.e. Romain Gary's biography) until I read the closing credits, which made it that much more impactful and emphatic since real people actually lived the epic events portrayed in the film. The closing credits also had another shock but I won't reveal it here so that I won't spoil the film! All in all, this was probably the best film I've seen in a long while; it felt genuine, engrossing and it left me with tears in my eyes, though the airplane food may have contributed to that.
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