mardi 31 mai 2011

The libido of older men – from the nightmare of DSK and Arnold to the charm of “Wandering Streams”

Le présent billet a été rédigé par Jonathan Goldberg, que je remercie. Une traduction en français sera publiée prochainement sur ce blog.

Ever since I settled in Los Angeles, my wife and I have religiously attended the annual French film festival known as COL-COA (City of Lights – City of Angels). 

The festival takes place at the Los Angeles Directors Guild’s swank theatre house on Sunset Boulevard, in the heart of Hollywood, not far from the Walk of Fame. The Guild theatre, conveniently located 5 minutes from our home, houses two large theatres, named Renoir Theatre and Truffaut Theatre for the annual French film festival.

Hollywood Walk of Fame - Sunset Boulevard
L. A. Directors Guild


All films are sub-titled in English. Some of the films have their premier showing at the Festival. (In 2008 I saw Bienvenue chez les Ch’tis when it made its world debut at the Festival, before going on circuit to become a record French box-office success. It was fascinating to see how well the English sub-titles captured the unusual dialogue of the film.)  Special guests who personally attended the 2011 Festival included Danny Boon and Nathalie Baye.

One of the films I saw this year was Les petits ruisseaux (in English, “Wandering Streams”), written and directed by Pascal Rabaté, the renowned French comic book author. Published in 2006, his comic book of the same name sold 45,000 copies in France and became the third best-selling title for publishers Gallimard and Futuropolis. The book received several awards in France, Belgium and Canada. It was the 2006 Comic Book Critics Award and was selected as the Best Comic Book of the Year in France.

                      
According to the Festival official programme, this movie is “A jovial tale about dormant libidos and new beginnings, Les Petits Ruisseaux follows the adventures of Émile, played by madcap comic actor Daniel Prévost. A retired widower, Émile spends most of his days fishing on the Loire River with his pal Edmond. One day, Edmond reveals that he has a very active, fulfilling sex life and soon after, dies of a heart attack. The sudden loss of his best friend is like an electroshock for Émile, who wakes up from his sedate existence and finds a new appetite for life. Feeling like an adolescent all over again, he starts to think it isn’t too late to find love.

Les Petits Ruisseaux – Bande Annonce


We are currently in the thrust of the DSK and Arnold S affairs, with some parts of the media in the USA and France having a field day in providing salacious and sensationalist descriptions of the alleged foul deeds of the ex-Governor of California and the ex-Managing Director of the IMF.  It is therefore reassuring to be reminded that the subject of the libido of elderly males can be put in the public eye with charm, allure and good taste.

But Luis Bunuel might not have agreed. “If the devil were to offer me a resurgence of what is commonly called virility, I'd decline”, he said. “Just keep my liver and lungs in good working order, I'd reply, so I can go on drinking and smoking! 

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