Sunday, 10 September 2017

The Sense of Wonder

The only way that I can beat Vic to seeing a movie these days is when I watch a French film. Last week I watched Le Goût des Merveilles, (translated in a way that loses the play on words - merveilles referring not just to "wonders" but to a simple fried-dough pastry popular in southern France that Louise, the protagonist, sells in a market along with her pears).

The film is a warm dramedy, starring Virginie Efira and Benjamin Lavernhe, and centres on a widowed mother of two trying to make a pear orchard work. But she's up against a changing economy, a corrupt co-op, and a tempting compromise. Into her life pops Pierre, a bright and sincere young man with Aspergers. The movie explores whether this is a complication or a solution.

While the film is more warm and light than seriously eye-opening, it seems to me that it does a good job of finding a balance in Pierre's role as a main character who is not neurotypical. There is some mystery and some unpredictability. It doesn't overplay sensitivities. It's just a respectful story of a type that we don't see too often - relatively realistic given the comedy genre and a few oversimplifications that might come from that.

The film is also beautifully filmed and finely acted. If you're up for subtitles, I'd check this one out. My mug is up and I give it ***+

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