Family Relations Turn Sour in new French Movie Set in Saint-Émilion

Cet article a été publié dans FR2DAY en 2011 (this article was published in FR2DAY in 2011)

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Newly released movie Tu seras mon fils, (You Will Be My Son) is much more than just a story about the complexities of family relations, it also provides an interesting look at the issue of the transmission of knowledge and heritage and tradition in the world of wine.

Directed by Gilles Legrand (Malabar Princess, The Maiden and the Wolves) and starring Niels Arestrup (A Prophet), Lorànt Deutsch (Jean de La Fontaine), Anne MarivinPatrick Chesnais (The Reader), Nicolas Bridet and Valérie Mairesse, the film follows Paul de Marseul (Arestrup), the owner of a prestigious vineyard in Saint-Émilion as he gets ready for the harvest.

Extremely authoritarian and demanding, Marseul cannot stand the thought that his son (Deutsch), who works with him on the estate, will one day succeed him. He dreams of a more talentedmore charismatic son that would be more in line with his idea of the perfect heir. The return from California of Philippe (Bridet), the brilliant son of his dying estate-manager (Chesnay) will mark the start of a dangerous war between two fathers and two sons.

The fact that this caustic and cruel movie takes places in a world where tradition means everything, definitively adds depths to the central issue of the story: Does a father have the right to reject his own offspring in favour of a substitute?

Legrand had originally wanted to set its film in Burgundy but after meeting Stéphane Derenoncourt, the consultant of the Saint Emilion Premier Cru Château Clos Fourtet, he reworked the script to focus on the Bordeaux region. It features the actual staff of the estate and Clos Fourtet’s technical director,Daniel Allard, even has a couple of lines in the movie.

Tu Seras Mon Fils is distributed by Universal Films, and opened in French cinemas on 24th August. It has been sold internationally by Other Angle Pictures.

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