Thursday, 20 March 2014

MFFF MOVIE REVIEW: CYCLING WITH MOLIERE (ALCESTE A BICYCLETTE)




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Two actors in their fifties. One is a recluse, who shied away from theatre, movies and glory, considering that “LE METIER” does not worth to pursue for it's treacherous nature. The other one is a successful, compromising actor, who wants to break into theatre.

Celebrity actor Gauthier arrives to Ile De Re to ask his friend (and the actor he had been admiring it for years) Serge, to take part in his new interpretation of Moliere’s METHANTHROPE. Serge had been retired from his acting for years and reluctant (AKA SCARED) to take on the part. Hence two men begin rehearsing. The interruptions in the face of the beautiful Italian widow, a love interest to them both, and a glorious porn starlet, who reminds them of their true age, are welcome interruptions.  But can the differences between the two egocentric men be put aside for the sake of friendship?

CYCLIG WITH MOLIERE can be compared to this years festival favourite (not my personal favourite) THE VENUS IN FUR. It focuses on two characters reading a play. But while VENUS IN FUR is a duel of sexes, CYCLING WITH MOLIERE is a duel of egos. It is about friendship love and theatre. And all the responsibility that comes with it.

For a film that only focuses on two actors, and clocks off just after two hours, CYCLING WITH MOLIERE can be considered a great success. Never before time went by so quickly. The scenes of two well known actors of French cinema swapping roles from METHANTHROPE are the best and most memorable moments of the film. They also have a sense of pure friendship and happiness that comes with it, but also highlight that any happiness is fleeting and only true friendship can endure the truest of tests - the test fame and envy.


Gauthier and Serge represent two sides of actor profession. A successful macho and a doubting Thomas have to co-exist in order to survive. If they can’t they will come to a sticky end.

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