MIFF Review: The Good Life
France (93 mins, dir. Jean Denizot)
Jean Denizot’s film ‘The Good Life’ is set in France and is based around the true story of a man who is on the run with his sons from the police after having lost custody to his ex-wife.
The father Yves (Nicholas Bouchard) and his sons Sylvia (Zacharie Chasseriaud) and Pierre (Jules Pelissier) have not been seen for eleven years but the hunt for the three of them is not over. Yves cannot stop running as charges such as child abduction have been placed on him and his sentence will be two years in prison with parole. The three of them live a quiet, isolated and nomadic life in the country side away from civilisation. After missing signs begin to emerge it becomes time for them to leave. Pierre the eldest brother is experiencing the ‘typical’ teenage emotions and runs off leaving Yves and Sylvia alone together. The two of them journey to the Loire Valley a beautiful, luxurious area where they stay together.
Sylvia explores the new region and meets Gilda (Solène Rigot), a beautiful young girl that attracts his attention and makes him wonder about the life he is living with his father. Over the next few days that he spends with Gilda he comes to realise what he wants to do with his life and that running is no longer an option. Overall I found that ‘The Good Life’ was a very dramatic film which explores the characters feelings and emotions and does a brilliant job in making us feel the way the characters do. The actors did a great job in performing as their characters and portraying different manorisms that suite the situation to make the emotions believable. Although it is a wonderful film I do believe that we should have seen the film from the mothers point of view as well. The mother has not seen her children for 11 years and it would have been interesting to see her anguish and helplessness. I believe that the movie would have been even better if they covered this. Without a doubt I would rate this film a 7/10 and suggest that anybody who has the opportunity to watch it to do so.
Written By: Thomas Senese – Jones, July 2014