Music, especially the great one, is a passion. Enter the arena to watch a cockfight in an operatic setting.
François and Denis Dumar are talented and recognized conductors. They are also father and son and have a contentious relationship. When the first is offered a position at the Milanese Italian Opera La Scala, the second makes him jealous and then decides to congratulate him. This opportunity is the father’s consecration and dream. Only, the director’s assistant made a mistake…
A little story of family competition without much interest except to enjoy excerpts from operas. The performances of the actors are much higher than the importance aroused by this film.
What is the real subject treated by the director? Is this an illustration of the phrase: The student has surpassed the master? The atmosphere of resentment, of the filial race for paternal valorization which seems out of reach or even the submission of a suffering wife in front of the spectacle of the disagreement of two members of her family are indeed facts. However, this does not make an original or deep basis for a film, or in any case not treated like that. The script might have gained in passion and intelligence if it hadn’t touched on the more anxious traits of the characters.
A psychoanalytical framework out of context and intergenerational is nevertheless present.
The clash of generations in a world that is always going faster and that claims the right to free itself from its old shackles of family transmissions. The power of the patriarchy certainly belongs to the ages of the characters of Pierre Arditi and Miou-Miou, explodes its limits with those of Yvan Attal and Pascale Arbillot and finally loses its importance with that of Nils Othenin-Girard. The rhythm is on the other hand held with an appreciable musical ease. Too bad that sort of botched Happy End ends what could have been a tribute to the little known and considered profession of conductor.
Aria and symphony lovers will certainly have a pleasant time of music, but not very original in terms of the choice of tunes.
FR – 2022 – Dramatic comedy – 87min
By Bruno Chiché
With Yvan Attal, Pierre Arditi, Miou-Miou, Pascale Arbillot…
07.12.2022 at the cinema