Friday, 14 March 2014

MFFF MOVIE REVIEW: JUST A SIGH (LE TEMP DE L'AVENTURE)



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A chance encounter on a train leads to the meeting of two very different people. Alix, an actress is travelling to Paris for an audition, when she notices an older man whose sad face mystifies her. He asks her for street directions, and knowing his destination, spontaneously, Alix decides to find him later in the day. Alix is not sure what her goal is, but her attraction to the mysterious stranger pushes her to make one foolish step after another. When the two finally collide, it is up to Alix to decide if this brief love affair is something real, or just a way for her to escape her complicated life…

Emmanuelle Devos and Gabriel Byrne make a great duo. They literally stumble into each other’s embrace, scared and insure what it can bring them.  He has a complicated past, she has a complicated present. But it is all forgotten and irrelevant for a few moments of happiness.

Jerome Bonnel’s clever directing makes us feel that every moment and every sigh matters for those two. The film is filled with many clocks and many deadlines. The comparison of the open space of the city, with its cheerful crowds of street performers and happy music, draws a contrast with the inner world of Alix and her man, whose name she doesn’t know.

The correct French title of this movie translates as TIME FOR AN ADVENTURE. It suggests both romantic and lighthearted undertones. But there’s nothing lighthearted about it. The film is a tense drama about making choices, about the price we pay for the moments of true happiness.

One of the characters in the film says that the happiness only exists in the past or in the future, but never in the present. With the past drugging them down and no foreseen future, the man and a woman cling to each other for as long as possible.


With it’s uncompromising reality JUST A SIGH makes a statement that pursuing the happiness in the present moment is probably all you may need to feel truly alive.

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