Director Claude Lelouch came to Narbonne, accompanied by actor Kev Adams, to present his 50th film. “Love is better than life”, the first part of a trilogy devoted to love, friendship and money, is screened in preview this Friday evening at the CGR.
After so many years of career, what is your driving force?
With this trilogy, I tried to put my 60 years of cinema, of observations, into their own. Humanity has always fascinated me and in my films I have spoken of men and women whom I have had the chance to meet, to rub shoulders with. My characters are not super heroes or super bastards, they have the qualities of their faults. And if I watch my 50 films today, I have the feeling that I have made a single film, that I have created a family that we will find in this trilogy.
What message do you want to send to the public through this 50e movie ?
With this trilogy, I want to make a comedy that is not that dramatic on a few certainties that I have reached after so many years, highs and lows, observations, tears of joy. I wanted to make a film full of hope to try to explain to my 7 children and my 8 grandchildren that everything is complicated before it is simple, that everything has a price, and that suffering is the most beautiful school in the world. I’ve learned everything from failure, and it’s these ups and downs that make life a pain in the ass in Wonderland. I also want to say thank you to the audience, who have often supported me, and goodbye to the grumpy.
“Life is a painful race in Wonderland”
The film was marked by the health context. How did you adapt?
The Covid was part of the cast. Initially, the film was without Covid, it was a story that had to take place around the world and not in Paris. But when the Covid arrived and it forced us to stop traveling, I transposed the whole story to Paris and we invited the Covid into the film. For 60 years, I have always invited events in my films, accompanied each era. It’s one of my certainties: things never turn out the way we imagined them to be. I believe in a very great screenwriter called life. There is what we want to do and what life wants us to do.
Love is better than life, is it also one of the certainties?
I am deeply convinced of this. Today, if I take stock of the most wonderful moments that I went through during these 80 years, these are the moments when my heart started to beat a little faster, those when we are able to love someone else more than yourself. Love is the Oscar of the Oscars, it is the palm of the hand. The rest are just consolation prizes.
The three A’s: Love, Friendship, Money are the three main concerns of humanity.
To talk about it as simply as possible, Gérard, Ary and Philippe got to know each other 20 years ago, when they were released from prison, and immediately asked themselves the real question: What if honesty was the best trick? Today, they are inseparable and scrupulously virtuous … But Gérard learns that he suffers from an incurable disease. Knowing that he is doomed, Ary and Philippe want to offer him his last love story… because Gérard has always repeated that love is better than life.
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Claude Lelouch in Narbonne: “Love is the Oscar of the Oscars”