Goupi Mains Rouges

Becker's droll satire plays out on several uneasy social borders-between city and country folk, family and outside community, men and women. Filmed in stunning shadows, it is haunting in its mixture of lighthearted and gallows humor. A city slicker departs Paris for the wilds-that is, the provinces-and arrives in fear and trembling at the home of his country family, the eccentric Goupis. His arrival is easily eclipsed by the birth of a calf in the barn, and thus he enters a house empty save for a kitten...and a corpse. Tavernier writes, “Goupi subverts, in a very subtle way, the theme of return to the land-a topic dear to the Vichy regime.…(It) shows the filmmaker's incredible and extremely modern formal mastery of drama: no main hero but many characters…superb direction of actors, splendid camera work that is never too formal.”

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