The Happiness of Others
Le bonheur des autres
Canada, 2011, 101 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Comedy, Family Friendly
Program: Contemporary World Cinema
Language: French English Sub-Titles
A quirky, gentle humor pervades this dramedy about family dysfunction, second families, and generational issues. Despite their age difference, 30-year-old Evelyn is happy in her relationship with her boyfriend, Jean-Pierre, who is 50. Even when she becomes pregnant, they both embrace this new stage of life. But they are not the only ones in the equation.
Jean-Pierre has been an absentee father to children who are now about the same age as his girlfriend. He’s now trying to rekindle his relationships with them. His son, Sylvain, regularly coaxes him into the kinds of outings fathers and sons experience at a much younger age. But Sylvain’s own familial ambitions are on hold—his girlfriend just split up with him. His daughter, Marion, has been trying unsuccessfully for two years to have a child, which is taking a steep toll on her marriage. Jean-Pierre’s ex-wife, Louise, who spent 20 years raising the kids on her own, is now trying to build a new life, albeit with the questionable help of a friend who thinks kinky sexual practices will set her free. When Jean-Pierre announces at Sylvain’s birthday dinner that he’s about to be a father, it hits everybody hard. Meanwhile, Evelyn’s having no better luck. Her parents try to rejoice with her, but in their circuitous, confessional ramblings they eventually give vent to their fears about her being with a man old enough to be the child’s grandfather. As Jean-Pierre seizes the opportunity to redeem himself as a father, Evelyn takes a long look at what her own future might be.
- VAL MOSES
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DIRECTOR: Jean-Phillipe Pearson
Producer: Christian Larouche
Editor: Yvann Thibaudeau
Principal Cast: Michel Barrette, Louise Portal, Marc-André Grondin, Julie Le Breton, Germain Houde
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