Tuesday, 16 October 2012
This is another film which is simply a gift. The storyline is a familiar one which delivers few surprises.What makes this film exceptional is the acting and the alchemy of the lead characters. This film is stylish, clever, believable and funny.
Based on the true story of Philippe Pozzo Di Borgo who became a quadriplegic following a para glider accident, this film charts the relationship between Philippe (François Cluzet) and the man Driss (Omar Sy) whom he hires to be his 'life help' his arms and legs.
Philippe has been depressed after the death of his wife three years after his accident. He has wealth beyond measure and a host of attendants to run his affairs and household. Driss only attends the job interview to get a signature on his benefit form to qualify for welfare. Philippe ends up hiring him. The gulf between the two men is in every way immense. Driss is from 'the projects' - the anonymous low grade high-rise hosuing of Paris' suburbs. He has been in prison and struggles to connect with his extended family.
What does connect the two men is their humanity. Driss is able to help Philippe recapture a sense of living for the moment as he races through Parisien traffic with Phillipe in his Maserati. Philippe tries to help Driss get acquainted with art and high culture by taking him to art galleries and the opera where the film delivers one of its funniest scenes. Driss helps Philippe get acquainted with dope! After watching this, your interest in the tactile sensitivity of ears may never be the same again!
The lives of the other staff in the grande maison are also touched by Driss as he works his infectious magic. His attraction to Magalie (Audrey Fleurot ) runs throughout the film with a nice touch at the end. Driss introduces his own music (Earth Wind & Fire, George Benson et al) to Philippe and the household, and this proves to be the catalyst for Philippe's best ever birthday party.
This film will inspire, delight and amuse you. It's warmth and characters will touch you. Its music will get your feet tapping and make you smile. You will come to love Driss and Philippe. If you don't mind sub-titles go and see this film now! I'll give it 8.5/10.