Mood Indigo

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L‘Écume des jours

A strikingly poetic fantasy story about the power and resolve to make any kind of sacrifice for a loved one.

Director: Michel Gondry
Year: 2013
Country: Belgium, France
Running time: 125 mins
Censor Rating: M - violence, sex scenes
Genres: Love stories

Producer: Luc Bossi
Screenplay: Michel Gondry, Luc Bossi. Based on the novel Froth on the Daydream by Boris Vian
Photography: Christophe Beaucarne
Editor: Marie-Charlotte Moreau
Production designer: Stéphane Rozenbaum
Costume designer: Florence Fontaine
Sound: Guillaume Le Bras
Music: Étienne Charry
In French with English subtitles
Colour and B&W/DCP 

With: Romain Duris (Colin), Audrey Tautou (Chloé), Gad Elmaleh (Chick), Omar Sy (Nicolas), Aïssa Maiga (Alise), Charlotte Le Bon (Isis), Sacha Bourdo (The Mouse), Philippe Torreton (Jean-Sol Partre)

Michel Gondry returns to France for this surreal romantic tragedy set in a retro-futurist Paris. Buckle up for a style overload: his stellar adaptation of Boris Vian’s widely beloved 1947 novel takes Gondry’s penchant for analogue bric-a-brac and whimsical design to giddy new heights.

“It’s a match made in heaven: director Michel Gondry, master of cinematic bricolage, meets Boris Vian’s cult novel Froth on the Daydream, and the result is Mood Indigo. Romain Duris plays handsome, wealthy Colin, who lives in a lovely apartment with a factotum (Omar Sy from The Intouchables) so brilliant and accomplished he leaves Jeeves at the starting-post. Colin’s friend Chick, avid collector of the books of celebrity philosopher Jean-Sol Partre, falls in love, so Colin decides that he too wants a girlfriend, which is when he meets Chloé (Audrey Tautou)…

Like the novel, the film starts off lighthearted, but there are signs all is not rosy in this world – a pile-up of fallen skaters leaves blood on the ice, while staff with sinister Loplop-like bird heads look on. There are hints of an oppressive Brazil-like bureaucracy in the background, and later glimpses of a munitions factory where weapons are grown in earth heated by the bodies of naked men. As the characters are confronted by worsening health and financial crises, the film – like Colin’s shrinking flat – becomes darker and more melancholy, all the colour and poetry draining out of it.” — Anne Billson, The Telegraph

“Gondry builds a beautifully busy alternate universe full of surprises, delighting in good French design and bric-a-brac.” — Lisa Nesselson, Screendaily