Tuesday, June 18, 2019
Home Entertainment "And I choose to live": Almond, step by step

"And I choose to live": Almond, step by step

And I choose to live **

Documentary by Nans Thomassey and Damien Boyer, 1:10.

In theaters since June 5th.

Gaspar was going to be one year old but his heart was beating so slowly that life left him. Shattered by the loss of their child, Amande and Guillaume, each in his own way, tried not to sink. He in action, she in the word. But to whom to speak, to whom to entrust the unspeakable, to whom to feel an understanding, a sharing, beyond compassion?

When bereavement fits in with the duration

Almond turns then to Nans Thomassey, director to whom we owe the cheerful emission Naked and cheeky on France 5 – we learn during the film that the young man, too, lost a loved one as a teenager.

Getting started

From their exchanges and their friendship is born a simple idea: to set in motion, to start on the mountainous roads of the Drôme. Surrounded, embraced by the sublime nature illuminated by the colors of autumn (season when nature dies and blazes), accompanied by a donkey sometimes docile sometimes recalcitrant, Amande and Nans take the road. Every evening, Guillaume joins them, driving a caravan decorated with naïve and joyful drawings.

If the crossing is already an objective in itself, it is enriched with meetings with men and, especially, women who evoke their own mourning, this scandal of the death of a child. The drama is old or new but the wound remains and everyone describes it with words of sincerity and strength that cross the screen to reach every spectator.

Love life

The gift of tears, the need to name the dead child, to face his own guilt, the role of rites (religious or not), the fight with deadly isolation … everyone delivers what helped him to to keep, to keep the link with others, not to hate oneself. And, most importantly, Ariadne's thread out of the labyrinth, all enjoin Amande to continue to love life. An expression almost unbearable to hear and yet saving, as the young woman will discover while the stones roll under his feet, the paths are becoming steeper and the view of the mountains more and more beautiful.

Live again after the death of a child

Made possible by the commitment of Nans Thomassey and producer Damien Boyer, supported by crowdfunding, And I choose to live upsets by the intensity of her "characters": Almond herself and those she meets; their experiences weave a fabric that is both dark and shimmering.

It is all the more unfortunate that the realization does not rise to the level of its subject. For lack of a banal and invasive soundtrack that almost never gives way to silence, to these systematic close-ups on dead leaves (and faces), to these overhanging images in the manner of tourist programs on the treasures of our French regions.

And, above all, the excessive scripting of certain stages (diving in a cave, stopping in an abandoned house) which then makes one think of the strings of reality TV. As if, to avoid dead time and clumsiness, we prevented the film to breathe fully. Without this, And I choose to live would have been a great movie.

(filmToTranslate tags) film review (t) documentary (t) mourning (t) Cinema (t) selected (t) Almond (t) live

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