Robin Campillo explores the years Act-Up in the company of a band of militants. Film group, sensitive and policy, 120 Beats per minute is a true great moment in cinema.
Already the author of’Eastern Boys, a film so political and sensitive, Robin Campillo is now known to give rise to benefit expectations. 120 BEATS PER MINUTE immerses us in this pivotal moment, where Aids has landed in the 90’s. Before, it was great. And then suddenly, he had to relearn how to live for an entire population in fear. Either by protecting themselves or by a caregiver. The evil is there, and you have to live with. The first few minutes and pose very quickly the context. As Nathan (Arnaud Valois), a young new member, we are given a briefing. What is Act-Up, how does their meetings, their activities. And then we are plunged in at the deep end, between actions-shock to get their message out, and moments of life. The film plays on this double face, where the determination of the events is constantly soothed by the beauty of life. These celebrations, these moments of confession, are of the decompression chamber, as much for the protagonists as it is for us. Because, they may be condemned to die, they are in the immediate future determined to enjoy every second of life. The way of the most effective films of band, 120 BEATS PER MINUTE happens to be multiple protagonists, and to create a small ecosystem that is governed by codes. Helped by a distribution fantasy where Nahuel Perez Biscayart brand considerably the spirits, Campillo draws in 2: 20 character salient, identifiable information. Technique (the terms are sometimes very scientific) but never haughty, the film happens to create a whirlwind of emotions cleverly juggling between epic and intimate policy. It is obviously upset to see young adults, normally in the flower of the age, fighting for hope that future months will not be the last. The film reminds us constantly that for many, time plays against them. The pharmaceutical companies have this time. To them, no. Where this fierceness, this passion which carries away everything in its path. Every second is a victory, every breath must be intense. An intensity that underpins the staging of Campillo, instinctive, energetic, punctuated with moments of grace drugs you are leaving on the tile.
120 BEATS PER MINUTE is a movie necessary, to the scope policy is still valid in 2017 (Campillo shows that the people has a power to make its voice heard), recalling that, somewhere, the battle is still current. What emerges, in fine, it is a rage to give them the right to love again. In the last third, when everything gets worse, Sean and Nathan are still the way to enjoy the precious moments of their scope (see the scene in the hospital). The film evokes with power, this permanent need of intensity that animated the youth. Even at the edge of the abyss. Robin Campillo erecting flamboyant manner its protagonists as tragic heroes, with all that this includes. The viewer is not fooled in the matter, it is made fast to the idea that all of these souls to which it is attached may disappear from one scene to the other. It comes out so logically messed up to 120 BEATS PER MINUTE, which has been ravaged by the portrait energetic of this generation in infusion.
Review published on the 20th may 2017 at the screening at the Cannes film Festival.
Check out also our interview river with Arnaud Valois
• Achievement : Robin Campillo
• Screenplay : Robin Campillo
• Main actors : Nahuel Perez Biscayart, Arnaud Valois, Adèle Haenel
• Release Date : 23 August 2017
• Duration : 2h20min