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last mitteRrand, the

France, 2004 (MIFF 2005, International Panorama)

Director: Robert Guediguian

last mitteRrand, the
[The Last Mitterrand] is a captivating portrayal of the compelling and complex Francois Mitterrand. Equally, it is a consummate tale of power, idealism, history and memory. Rising to power in 1981, when socialism was in its death throes elsewhere in Europe, Mitterrand led France's first socialist government until shortly before his death in 1996. Based on a book by Georges-Marc Benamou, Robert Guediguian reveals Mitterrand through the statesman's conversations with a young, left, ideologue, Antoine Moreau. Somewhat in awe of the president, Moreau is a journalist researching a biography of the president at his behest. He spends the last months of the president's life in his company, conversing with him on his politics, beliefs and past. He determinedly seeks the truth of Mitterrand's early association with Nazism and the Vichy government. Mitterrand suffers no false modesty and is proud that he's never been nailed for alleged misconduct during those years. Guediguian is not overly concerned with verisimilitude in this riveting film, but evokes events to enable a more open reflection on power and truth, and to illuminate the real man behind the statesman.
D Robert Guediguian P Frank Le Wita, Marc de Bayser S Gilles Taurand, Georges-Marc Benamou WS Pathe International L French w/English subtitles TD 35mm/col/2004/120mins Robert Guediguian was born in Marseilles, France, in 1953. His films include [Where the Heart Is] (1998), [The Town Is Quiet] (2000).

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