Friday, June 02, 2006

Dans La Peau de Jacques Chirac

I am not a fan of Karl Zéro, the director of Dans La Peau de Jacques Chirac. I never really liked Le Vrai Journal, his show on Canal+, and I can't stand his orange & black uniform, but what really did it in for me was his "interview" of Zacharias Moussaoui's mom, where he let all her crazy rantings & ravings go unchecked. However, this film is a gem. It was surprisingly very accessible: it's not only for the intellos and those interested in politics. While thankfully I had my boyfriend to tell me about the less familiar characters, even if you don't know much about the ins and outs of French politics (me!), you'll still find it funny. There was constant, albeit cynical, laughter the entire time we watched the film. Chirac is such a clown, such a showman, and that shit-eating grin never leaves his face no matter what questions are asked or what happens. While the trailers do capture some of the highlights of the film (this youtube has 3 of them),

there are some other great moments. Bernadette & Chirac boarding a plane: Bernadette trips, Jacques grabs her elbow, and she pushes him away (cassé!).

Chirac and Mitterand during the presidential debate of 1988, where this famous dialogue follows:
Chirac, "Permettez-moi juste de vous dire que, ce soir, je ne suis pas le Premier ministre et vous n'êtes pas le Président de la République, nous sommes deux candidats à égalité, qui se soumettent au jugement des Français, le seul qui compte, vous me permettez donc de vous appeler Monsieur Mitterrand."
(Allow me just to say that, tonight, I am not the Prime Minister and you are not the President; we are two equal candidates, subject to the judgement of the French people, the only judgment that matters, and thus you would allow me to address you as Mr. Mitterand [instead of Mr. President].)
To which Mitterand replies, "Mais vous avez tout à fait raison, monsieur le Premier Ministre."
(You're completely right, Mr. Prime Minister.)***

Another shocker was when Chirac was hammered at a banquet in 1991 and complains about immigrant workers (particularly Muslims & Africans) taking advantage of the welfare system:

I read the reviews in Figaroscope and Le Monde today and they seemed to be expecting a documentary; it is certainly far from this, and if you are looking for some hard journalism than you will definitely be disappointed. I, however, enjoyed this film, simply because it made me laugh, it was only an hour and a half, and I felt like I knew a little bit more about France when I left the movie theater. If you're even just a teensy weensy intrigued by these clips (or at least raise your eyebrows or giggle at them), you should go see the film. The official site is great, with even more clips and a Chirac soundboard, and that catchy Chirac anthem that I can't get out of my head "Votons Jacques Chirac, en avant toute la nation, pour tous, Jacques Chirac, maintenent Président, ensemble maintenent, Jacques Chirac, Président..."

Votez Jacques Chirac, 1981 : le tube officiel de la campagne présidentielle
(durée : 3 m 39 s, mp3 ici)

(Lifted from Aeiou, le blog de flu)

***The entire text of the debate can be found here in PDF format

UPDATE: I have downloaded the song, cropped the chorus, changed the file format, uploaded it onto my phone, and made this one of my ringtones! Mwah hah hah.

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Benny said...

Hey hi,

Your blog gives me a good Paris fix. I hope you don't mind that I added you as a link. :-)



Julia said...

Sounds perfect! I'll be sure to see it too (and that song is hilarious! So catchy ("la droite aime la musique pop" - haha!)

Gem said...

I heard an anecdote about Mitterand: someone who had known him for a long time asked "on se tutoie?"

He answered, "Si vous voulez."

Still cracks me up!

Etienne said...

B - I'm flattered :)

The Chirac song is irresistible. I could not get it out of my head for about 3 days after the film! And the lyrics are hilarious! I would love to set it as my ringtone, even though I know I would get bad reactions to it in public. I would also love to hear it as a remix, or as a hook in a rap song...couldn't you imagine Diam*s rapping to it?!

And about Mitterand...yeah he seems very intimidating, all that he kept hidden is incredible - his cancer, his illegitimate daughter (Mazarine).

videosamerique said...