Leytonstone Pop-Up Cinema is proud to present the following screening:
Bienvenue Chez les Ch’tis
Dir: Dany Boon. (2008) France; 106 min.
The French comedy that has broken every box-office record in France, won numerous awards and has caught the eye of Hollywood and other countries with a number of remakes on the pipeline.
“Although living a comfortable life in Salon-de-Provence, a charming town in the South of France, Julie has been feeling depressed for a while. To please her, Philippe Abrams, a post office administrator, her husband, tries to obtain a transfer to a seaside town, on the French Riviera, at any cost. The trouble is that he is caught red-handed while trying to scam an inspector. Philippe is immediately banished to the distant unheard of town of Bergues, in the Far North of France. Leaving his child and wife behind, the crucified man leaves for his frightening destination, a dreadfully cold place inhabited by hard-drinking, unemployed rednecks, speaking an incomprehensible dialect called Ch’ti. Philippe soon realizes that all these ideas were nothing but prejudices and that Bergues is not synonymous with hell…” (imdb.com)
“The plot is based on that most thundering of clichés, the epiphany of a sophisticate who travels fearfully to a primitive region only to be won over by its laconic denizens’ rough-hewn but heart-warming life-force. This may sound like the basis for one of those vomit-inducing exercises in Gallic cinematic sentimentality that we Brits seem to swallow so happily, perhaps a sort of ‘Chocolat’ in reverse. Well, it isn’t.
The banality of the underlying concept is just one joke in a confection that, though genuinely affecting, is in essence fiendishly funny. Not, however, simply so. That “Ch’tis” business signals one of the most elaborate jeus d’esprit in the entire history of cinema.
The film has sold more than 20m tickets (that’s close to a third of France’s population of nearly 64m) and is now the most popular movie of all time at the domestic box office. Will Smith has bought the rights for a US remake, while an Italian version is already in the works.” (The Guardian.)
More details on the film here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/movie/123575/bienvenue-chez-les-ch-tis