I get really excited when I see a modern French movie that I thoroughly enjoy… so I considered it an important enough event to share this one with you, because not only did I enjoy this movie but I laughed out loud several times in the movie theater… not something I do at most films, even if they are funny.
Le Nom des Gens, directed by Michel Leclerc
Starring Sarah Forrestier as Bahia Benmahmoud who is pretty much half nude or nude throughout the entire film, but it’s not offenssive or disagreable by any means, plays a young extrovert and rather chaotic woman who has an interesting use for sex. She uses it to convert politically right-wing men into liberals. She comes from a mixed-racial family that is uber vocal about & uber involved in, social rights movements for minorities.
Arthur Martin, played by Jaques Gamblin; a sort of introverted guy who studies dead birds and aviary diseases. his mother was an orphaned child durring WWII whose parents we sent to Auschwitz. Her name was changed as a child, and she suffered great emotional trauma, but the family never talks about any of it. His life doesn’t seem to have much excitement or movement, until he meets Bahia.
The context of the film centers around people’s names and the prejudices that come with them. Arthur Martin being a very common name and Bahia Benmahmoud a very exotic name… the two characters enter into an exchange of ideas and ideals that try to break the boundries of a name.
This film touches on some contemporary and poignant social issues in France today with humor yet remaains tasteful and wildly entertaining. I hope it makes it to the USA theaters but fear it’ll be ruled out for its abondant nudity. I highly recommend this movie! In French theaters now.