Cloclo

Film
3 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(3user reviews)
Cloclo_05.jpg
It’s one of the best-known songs ever written, but how many of us realise the ultimate karaoke classic, ‘My Way’, actually started life as a French chanson, ‘Comme d’habitude’? In the Anglophone world, its co-writer Claude François is the answer to a trivia question, yet in France he was a cultural icon, a ’60s popster and a ’70s crooner scorned by the critics but beloved by a nation. As this full-on biopic reveals, however, he was also a deeply troubled individual, incessantly driven to prove his worth to a stern father scornful of the entertainment world, yet all the while embodying his dear old dad’s toxic personality – a manipulative, preening egomaniac.
 
Best-known for his portraits of addled youth for the Dardenne brothers, leading man Jérémie Renier is not only an uncanny lookalike for Cloclo (as François’s fans nicknamed him) but delivers a tremendous performance, from demented-marionette dance moves to volatile drama-queen freakouts. Vividly capturing the sheer campery of the yé-yé era’s Gallic co-option of Motown grooves and moves, ‘Cloclo’ peaks with an emotional piledriver of a sequence building from the creation of ‘Comme d’habitude’. Unfortunately, it loses impetus in surveying the following decade, flailing around in detail and never landing a killer thematic punch. Still, it’s fascinating for all that, and Renier proves oddly touching as the ill-fated idol whose determination to win love by controlling every aspect of his life leaves him ever more isolated. As Gallic showbiz sagas go, it’s far better than ‘La Vie en Rose’, but not quite as distinctive as ‘Gainsbourg’.

By: Trevor Johnston

Posted:

Release details

Rated:
12A
Release date:
Friday June 22 2012
Duration:
148 mins

Cast and crew

Director:
Florent-Emilio Siri
Cast:
Jérémie Rénier
Benoît Magimel
Monica Scattini

Average User Rating

4.4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|3
1 person listening

Found this film fascinating!...the casting of the film was amazing, Jeremie Renier did an excellent job..hadn't heard of CloClo before this, and didn't know of the connection to the song My Way...if you enjoy French movies then this is definitely worth watching!


Found this film fascinating!...the casting of the film was amazing, Jeremie Renier did an excellent job..hadn't heard of CloClo before this, and didn't know of the connection to the song My Way...if you enjoy French movies then this is definitely worth watching!


I was lucky enough to see this film in Chichester and like the rest of the audience was bowled over. Mind you, if you weren't in France forat least part of the 60s it may not mean much to you, in which case you can just enjoy it for a tour de force performance by Jeremie Renier in the title role and the breathtaking staging of the production numbers. My only criticism is the extreme length. I reckon two hours for a biopic of this nature is the limit, and several scenes in this one made the same point twice. But do get to see it if you possibly can, it will not make the same impact on DVD.