With her life-affirming, upbeat comedy-drama, French director Blandine Lenoir tackles one of life – and culture’s – big taboos: the menopause. Borrowing its title from the Nina Simone song, this is the story of an everyday woman, waitress Aurore (Agnès Jaoui), who’s just turned 50 and lives with her two nearly grown-up teenage daughters (her ex is down the road raising a second family). At the restaurant where she works, Aurore’s boss is a sexist idiot who thinks she’s too old to work front-of-house so hides her behind the bar.
In fact, Aurore’s increasingly feeling invisible as an older woman – the film’s running gag is that she’s constantly getting stuck behind automatic doors that don’t open for her, as if she’s not there. But then again, life isn’t so bad. Aurore is funny, has great friends, is mostly comfortable with her body and unexpectedly finds herself with two supremely dateable guys at her beck and call.
Maybe it’s the exclamation mark in the title, but ‘I Got Life!’ reminded me just a little of ‘Mamma Mia!’ in its forced cheerfulness. But Agnès Jaoui’s performance is smart and warm, giving Aurore such a lovely rootable quality, you are willing for things to work out for her.