Today’s ‘Review Tuesday’. My Sweetheart Vivienne won two free tickets to My Afternoons with Margueritte [1, 2, 3] – a 2010 subtitled French film starring Gerard Depardieu. We saw it last Thursday evening – at the end of my ‘4-hour delay day’ . It’s the story of an improbable friendship between Depardieu’s character Germain (a 50-year-old uneducated, minimally literate and seemingly oafish builders labourer) and Margueritte (a cultured, bookish, prim 90-year-old lady). By chance the two meet on a park bench. Germain counts the pigeons, and he’s named all 19. Margueritte’s fascinated by them too. Their friendship blossoms. Each gives; and each takes. But we see him develop more. Maybe because his baseline’s lower. Though this movie’s a hybrid of My Fair Lady, Being There and Tuesdays with Maurie, it benefits from its intergenerational dimension. At its end – which comes unexpectedly without being unexpected – tears were streaming down Sweetheart Vivienne’s and my cheeks. We both felt cheated of a few more scenes – to show us what happened next. And that, I reckon, is the hallmark of a fine film. My view, as a semi-neoluddite from backwoods Tasmania, is that the current plethora of so-called social media contributes little if anything to our ability to form meaningful relationships and develop them over time. My Afternoons with Margueritte is a model relationship case-study: sensitive, languid and joyous. Though I saw it gratis, it gave me so much it would’ve been worth the admission price. It’s a wonderful film. I rate it four stars.
2 days ago