In a small town, Hélène is a family matriarch who has devoted her life to preserving the legacy of her artist uncle. However, while her eldest son, Frédéric, wants to preserve her home after her passing, she harbors no such illusions as she prepares her legacy. After her death, her children realize what she anticipated as they come to terms with their inheritance's place in their own lives. In the resulting disposition of their mother's assets, treasured heirlooms of a romantic family past drift away even as their changing modern world confronts the value of their memories.Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
When the movie starts, it is said that Helene is 75 years old. The Los Angeles retrospective is also mentioned as an event to happen soon after that first reunion, and given that Helene dies little time after that, we can perfectly assume that she was 76 at most when she passed away. Yet, near the end of the film, a shot of her grave denotes that she was born circa 1912, and that she died in 2007. That would make her around 95 at the time of her death. See more »
He said to choose anything. l couldn't take advantage. l took something ordinary. What would l do with something valuable?
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This is a haunting film about the distorting effects of monetary exchange on family life and the cohesion of society. It will give food for thought to anyone with elderly parents who may have accumulated a few works of art during their lifetime. At a time of grief, the bereaved have difficult questions to answer. The film-goer is left wondering, "What would I have done if I had been in a similar situation?" It is not a film to be quickly forgotten. Although the issue of the fate of the family's country house may be a specifically French theme, others dealt with are more universal and have a deep resonance for anyone with elderly relations. Juliette Binoche may be the name that draws film-goers in, but there is fine acting from all the performers.
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