The latest movie by Cédric Klapisch (Family Resemblances, The Spanish Apartment) takes audiences to Meursault in the Burgundy wine country. In his portrayal of a group of winegrowing siblings, the director shows how wine is made and how heritage is passed down through the generations.
Following on from Chinese Puzzle — his previous feature-length movie filmed in New York in 2012 — Cédric Klapisch has swapped the city for the countryside and a couple for a family drama. Jean (Pio Marmaï) is the oldest of his siblings, and left the family winery ten years ago to travel the world before taking the reins of a vineyard in Australia. With the news his father (Eric Caravaca) has little time left to live, he returns to his home town.
Jean’s sister Juliette (Ana Girardot), is delighted to see him again, but his brother Jérémie (François Civil) struggles to accept his reappearance. Their father passes away just before the yearly harvest, and the family is torn between selling their family’s heritage and preserving the winery where they grew up. Jean is in two minds about investing, unsure of his brother and sister’s ability to keep the place running if he sells his share. Even their financial means are uncertain, as real estate prices in the region have skyrocketed, and considerable inheritance taxes loom.
In just one year, these young adults confront life choices and the reinvention of their family relationships, blossoming and maturing alongside the vintage they are making together. In a blend of fiction and documentary footage, Cédric Klapisch films the production of Burgundy wine — one of the world’s finest. As usual, he excels in his depiction of group scenes, from working among the vines to the party celebrating the end of the harvest. Despite a simple plot and a picture-postcard aesthetic, the landscapes are quite magnificent and the family story is moving.
U.S. release: March 23
Director: Cédric Klapisch
With: Pio Marmaï, Ana Girardot, François Civil, Eric Caravaca
Distributor: Music Box
Running time: 113 min
Article published in the March 2018 issue of France-Amérique.