Eleventh feature film dElie Chouraqui, the ORIGIN OF THE VIOLENCE is the adaptation of the eponymous novel by Fabrice Humbert, inspired by the true story of the latter. Powerful and moving, it tells the story of how Nathan Fabre, a young professor, discovered incidentally during a visit to the Buchenwald concentration camp, the existence of a whole piece of his family that he had hidden the existence. In particular, a large jewish father (Nathan Wagner / César Chouraqui) who was deported and that he decided to trace the fate. Through the life of this man to whom he is intimately related, it penetrates the darkness that inhabited it ever since, in his nightmares, in his acts of violence, and that he did not know until now the original…

Surprisingly, the ORIGIN OF THE VIOLENCE is a positive film, it is indeed a very beautiful film. It is difficult, or even paradoxical, to use such adjectives when speaking about the Holocaust, but here things are different. The goal was neither to Fabrice Humbert, nor for Elie Chouraqui to produce a work larmoyante on the issue. This is why the film is not turned towards the past, even if he comes back over, but into the future. He took part in the essential duty of memory but invites us to resilience. As said Gabi (played by Miriam Stein) a young German descendant of a family nazi, who therefore bears the horror and guilt in inheritance : it is necessary to know, it is important not to forget, but it is necessary to live. It comes to know its past to build its future, to discover his origins to know who we are, what wood we’re made of. The interest of this film is based on the quest for identity of Nathan Fabre (Stanley Weber) : on the need to be aware of what was transmitted to us, without our knowing it and often instinctively more than voluntary. Understand to move forward, finally released from invisible chains, but so heavy that they cripple or cause of behavior unexplained (such as the violence in this case).

In addition to the high-quality construction that delivers a fluid enjoyable and soften the light, there is something captivating in the scenario that is mostly secret, languages are untied as we advance in the film, but also of the rhythm. Like a novel, one has the impression to follow a two-story separate through chapters that alternate between one and the other and eventually join. What makes the richness of this film is thatEli Chouraqui combines with ease the past and the present, tenderness and terror, a dimension of historical and personal narrative, and most of all, through this, horrors and banality. In fact, this is very strange and upsetting it is to highlight the persistence of life and humanity even in the midst of the absolute horror. To show that, despite the war that is playing out people have continued to love, to have children. Within the camps, and barbarism, one of the characters points out that there were also moments of daily common discussions, friendships are strong, which are related and even fun, sometimes. If one understands that it is the instinct of survival that pushes to all this, a way to deny momentarily the painful reality, an escape that is reassuring, we can only be affected by the power of the human (in the good or in the bad sense).

“The ORIGIN OF THE VIOLENCE combines with ease the past and the present, tenderness and terror, a dimension that is historical and personal stories, horrors and banality.”

The ORIGIN OF THE VIOLENCE , tells simply life as it is, the stories of families as they exist in number : their secrets, the weight of the transmission, the choices of education that are sometimes in accusations, like boomerangs, the definition of multiple paternity. But also the difference of background and personalities within a family that is always fascinating : mixing traitors and heroes, leaders and followers, love and suffering. What upsets him the most, however, is the double reading offered by this film over which one discovers the origin of the Violence, fear, end of darkness : a metaphor of ignorance and secrecy, which is included in this sentence, ” the silence, it is leprosy “. And on the other hand the origin of the Hope which we used as an engine, that drives the survival instinct. This Hope is born clearly to the fact that there is always a spark of humanity, even in the chaos, the generosity skirts always abjection, regardless of whether it is in lesser proportion. In this case, on a historical scale this would be the Resistance, and the specific scale that would be the goodness of one man (in this case, Marcel Fabre, thanks to which Nathan Wagner has been able to survive in some way).

Finally, Elie Chouraqui has pushed the mix of genres into the music, alternating the seventh symphony of Beethoven with the electronic music of DJ Deep (Cyril Etienne) and DJ Dream (with Roman Poncet). Like surprising casting, which includes the time of the holy monsters such as Michel Bouquet and the next generation of “new generation” that are Stanley Weber (son of Francis Weber), and César Chouraqui (son ofElie). The first has already been spotted in the series Borgia for Canal +. Beyond a physical attractive, we can say that it manages to oscillate with ease between sensitivity and anger throughout the film and, thereby, to generate a immense sincerity. As to Caesar, the great revelation of this film, it is necessary in this first film role with a charisma and an accuracy absolutely incredible, from assurance to fear with a natural disconcerting, served by an attitude, and a morphology that is fully aligned with his character. Necessarily, these will be ” expected to deliver “, but their respective services they provide without a doubt the deserved recognition.

The only downside is the choice is quite enigmatic Richard Berry , since it has no physical resemblance neither with the one nor with the other actors mentioned above, which is a little unfortunate for the credibility of the story. This being the case, having regard to the quality of the rest, it would be a shame to focus on what only appears after the fact as a detail and miss to get caught up in this exciting journey between past generations and present.

In the end, this is not sad but excited that we spring from the ORIGIN OF THE VIOLENCE as it is proposed to consider the tragic events of our history such as the founding elements of our personality and not as a brake. He invites us to face them to overcome them rather than bury them to flee. It is thought provoking, lingers in the mind well beyond the session, and for that alone it is a film that deserves to be seen.

Stephanie Ayache

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