A DV experiment which grows on you big time. Opening with a neat introduction to its disabled and handicapped characters, riding in a minibus on the Southern French Route Nationale 7A ('The Pleasure Trail'), this challenging faux documentary is a piercing examination of society's attitude to the less favoured among us, an inadvertent (but who knows?) essay on form and, finally, an affecting love story. Set in a Roman Catholic centre, the film uses mainly disabled, non-professionals and follows the routine of residents and carers with refreshing handheld immediacy, shorn of the usual tricks, and with little or no music. Of the performers, that of Dardenne brothers' regular Olivier Gourmet stands out. As gruff, candid ex-union militant René, his efforts to make kind nurse Julie (Kaci, excellent) find him a prostitute set the home into often hilarious turmoil. Writer/director Sinapi's transparent humanism dignifies carers and patients alike, and by never losing sight of our common needs to be understood, recognised and loved, he turns the film into a quiet celebration of the fruits of that recognition.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Jean-Pierre Sinapi, Anne-Marie Catois|