Je me tue à le dire
- English subtitles
Stylistic and absurdist look at the Oedipus complex, personified by Michel Man, whose symbiotic relationship with his mother runs so deep that he is convinced he’s taken on her illness. With all the (un)imaginable drama that entails.
Michel Man is a man. He has the age of a man and he looks like a man. But he is actually a big child in the body of a man. This becomes evident in five chapters, which mainly revolve around his mother: the woman who nursed him for a year as a sickly baby, to make sure he would get an abundance of all important nutrients (and who never stops reminding him of that fact). It may explain his obsession with breasts – not only those of women, but also his own.
Michel does not only express his concern about his sick mother by paying excessive attention to her, he also develops a bizarre form of hypochondria.
Despite his refusal to act like an adult – his part-time job at domestic appliance store Electrochic doesn’t amount to much – Michel has a girlfriend, Aurélie, and they live together. His life seems to be running smoothly, until his mother gets sick. Michel does not only express his concern by paying excessive attention to his stubborn mother, but he also develops a bizarre form of hypochondria, causing him to gradually drift ever further away from reality. The story of the pathologically cocoa-drinking Michel is told in five chapters, outlining in often absurd fragments the relationship between him and the most important people in his life: his mother, his girlfriend and his colleague and friend Darek.
The film was shot in stylish black-and-white, the dialogues are sharp, the scenes carefully framed and accompanied by cheerful tunes, contradicting the gravity of events. Very different from Michel himself, who throws himself into the drama of his life with full abandon and devastating consequences. Nevertheless, Je me tue à le dire remains a light-hearted, solid film, with delightful scenery chewing, lots of cats and even a little dance or two.
Nicole Santé (translation by Marjan Westbroek)