For his first film, Ceasefire, Emmanuel Courcol immerse the viewer in the trauma of a family after the war of 1914-1918.
CEASE-FIRE is the first feature film to be very successful director, screenwriter Emmanuel Courcol, known until then for his work as a screenwriter (Welcome, Boomerang). Met during the International Film Festival of History, he explained, he was being seized from his family history that he had had very much at heart, and have wanted to pay tribute to ” those men scarred for life, which have sometimes had the feeling of being forsaken, unrecognized, and whose lives reverberate like shock waves on the following generations“.
The first stage of THE CEASEFIREin the trenches of the 1914-1918 war, happe, quite literally, the viewer and leaves them breathless, both physically and emotionally. With violence and realism is incredible, this fascinating scene lays the first stone of the future of the hero George (Romain Duris) and comes without warning on his adventure, his fears, his relationship to death, and his false nonchalance in the face of life. The staging of the CEASE-FIRE is quite bombastic, but it is used cleverly about the film director, whose main source of inspiration comes from Journey to the end of hell.
At A time when France is commemorating the 250000 dead of the battle of the Chemin des Dames of 1917, a CEASE-FIRE makes it a fine tribute to the soldiers who died for France, but also to the survivors. Through the journey of three brothers, the movie questions with an undeniable force in the way the families have been faced with this chilling post-war. John, the brother of George, is dead, but his memory is still heavy to wear and impossible mourning to do so in the absence of a body. Other soldiers have returned invalid or mutilated – such as the famous ” broken faces “, that François Dupeyron was beautifully evoked in The House of Officers.
CEASE-FIRE revives an era where time was not of the effusion, or the sadness, or the sharing of a lived experience painful. It shows men yet valid, but deeply upset. They rebuild their lives after experiencing the horror, without the psychological help for post-traumatic proposed today. Their psychological wounds are invisible, but they must live with their nightmares, the memory of comrades who died in combat, the scythe that strikes suddenly, and in a quarter of a second, it turns around and we see the bodies of his comrades disappearing in the explosions. The flash-forwards present in the film strengthen, according to the director, ” this idea of post-traumatic stress disorder “.
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The dread of Marcel (Grégory Gadebois), the other brother, survivor of George, has made him lose the word. He learned the language of signs with Hélène (Céline Sallette), a young modern woman, cheerful, and. It will teach us the life by attaching himself to the young widow Madeleine (Julie-Marie Parmentier). As CEASE-FIRE also evokes the courageous women, mothers and wives, had to wait for the soldiers off to the front. As to Georges, he preferred to flee in Upper Volta and has built a new life after the hell, in the company of his fellow african Diofo (Wabinlé Nabié). The director wanted to show “another way of living the trauma as Diofo, so proud to have fought for France, tells the story of his war in a show that valued the exploits of its captain”. George has put a good distance between Europe and its past, and has opened to another universe and with other traditions, to the earth, to the light and sun of Africa. The aesthetic vision of Georges leading quietly his canoe on the water at the heart of the dampness of the Africa in fact think, in many ways, to The Vagaries of a river by Bernard Giraudeau.
Violent events bring Georges in France in 1923 and confront his memories. But also to his inability to understand what runs through Marcel, and his own questionings, that he had avoided until then. Indeed, how can one speak of the unspeakable ? How do I share this fear, even long after, taps, hugs and chokes ? How to live with the responsibility of not being home with Jean, and how to bear the reproaches of their mother ? How do I find the strength to live ? Love is one of the solutions to heal the souls and wounded hearts, proposed by Emmanuel Courcol , who ” believes in the power of love “. However, the sharing of baggage loaded with sufferings of George and Helena is not the sufficient condition to reach happiness, and the director had the good sense not to choose the easy way out.
Emmanuel Courcol wrote their characters especially for Céline Sallette, Grégory Gadebois and Marie-Julie Parmentier, but he had not originally thought of Romain Duris. It has done well to offer this magnificent role, which allows him to express something more profound and intense than usual, whose smile always smiling face is absent. And even if it is a little difficult to believe in the siblings with Grégory Gadebois, both the actors are not very similar, several scenes together are especially moving. For a first film, the CEASE-FIRE is a master stroke upsetting of truth, emotion and humanity. It transports the viewer in this time of unspoken, injuries and reconstruction, and manages to elicit a lot of empathy for all the characters.
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• Realization : Emmanuel Courcol
• Screenplay : Emmanuel Courcol
• Main actors : Romain Duris, Céline Sallette and Grégory Gadebois
• Release Date : 19 April 2017
• Duration : 1h43min