We owe Daniel Auteuil a great debt for Adapting, Directing and Acting in this little gem of a film. The story is simple. Two kids come of age in a fishing village in France, they play at love and marriage, mistaking it for a game. Then the boy leaves to follow his dream of adventure at sea, not knowing he is abandoning FANNY, pregnant with their child.
Thus ensues a series of events which include: uproar in the families and the lives of friends of families, honor, duty, the foolishness of youth, the heavy wisdom of age, and customs now long gone. But these issues are still so much with us. When I go to the gym, I’m forced to glance at “Murray” the American talk show, where a bunch of screaming me-me’s deal with the exact same issues: love lost and fathers found. But never with the beauty, gracefulness, depth and humanity involved in Auteuil’s film.
The grief of abandoned love, a child without a father or a name, the histories of they who came before who struggled with the same issues, all are revealed. The film is so full of the dreams and hopes of parents and children, that when Eros comes to take his arrows back, no one has won at the game of love at all. Only a giving remains. Auteuil took his time to tell this story, so we feel every move like the ocean of the heart. I thank him.