Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Les Choristes │ Cinéma Vérité

  Maxence Perrin (Pépinot)
 Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc

I can count the times on one hand that a film has moved me in profound ways.   "Les Choristes (2004) ", directed by  Christophe Barratier, is one of those films.  "Les Choristes" is such a beautiful movie that as I was watching it, I felt completely immersed in it, and I experienced it with such an intensity, that it became real life to me, or cinéma vérité.  Not only that though, because the soundtrack was to say the least, angelic, and the proverbial icing on the cake.  "Les Choristes" is about Clément Mathieu (Gérard Jugnot), who has failed in all of his jobs up to this point in his life.  He is really nondescript, sort of like the character of Walter Mitty in James Thurber's short story "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty".  In his "quiet desperation" he accepts a position as a prefect at Fond de L'Etang (Bottom Of The Pond), a boarding school for emotionally troubled boys, and the rest I should say, is pure cinematic magic.  Maxence Perrin who plays the part of the enigmatic Pépinot, is magnificent, and tends to "steal scenes" with his intense acting, and boyish grace.  By-the-way, Jacques Perrin, the actor who plays the part of the adult Pierre Morhange, is Maxence's father in real life.  To say any more about "Les Choristes" would detract from the mystical nature of the movie.  Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc, a choral group from Lyon, France provides the beautiful music for "Les Choristes".  In fact Jean-Baptiste Maunier, one of their choir members plays the pivotal role of Pierre Morhange in the movie.  When they sang "Cerf-Volant (The Kite)", also known as "Les Avions En Papier (The Paper Airplanes)" near the end of the movie, my heart broke into a million pieces, and I wept for hours afterwords.  I am still weeping as I write this post.  Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc has a web site that can be found at this link;  Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc (Officicial Website) I strongly recommend that you watch this haunting, and potentially life-changing movie.  In the video on the very bottom, Jean-Baptiste Maunier and  Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc sing the very beautiful Cerf-Volant from "Les Choristes".  Safe journeys to all the fans of Angel Watchers, wherever you may be.



  1. Gilbert,
    Thank you for this excellent post. This looks like a wonderful story, and the music is heartwarming. You have brightened my day!


  2. Hi Hermes,
    I love "Les Choristes" so much. I've been watching it every day this past week. Thanks for stopping by.

    With a hug,