Cycling With Moliere (Alceste a bicyclette)
Director: Philippe Le Guay
Cast: Fabrice Luchini, Lambert Wilson, Maya Sansa
Genre: Comedy Drama
Language: French and Italian with English subtitles
Country of Origin: France 2013 104 mins.
Released by ARTIFICIAL EYE/CURZON FILM WORLD
'Treachery, deceit and selfishness abound in a power game on the Ile de Re - a delight.'
Serge Tanneur (Fabrice Luchini), hasn't acted for sometime and has been living in self-imposed isolation for the past three years, spending his time cycling through the windswept landscapes of Ile de Re. in the hope of luring his friend back to the stage, Gauthier Valence (Lambert Wilson), whose acting career's on a high, visits Serge and offers him a lead role in a planned production of Moliere’s, 'The Misanthrope'. Serge insists on rehearsing all week, but with the play’s producer, Gauthier’s agent and his lover Francesca (Maya Sansa) all soon arriving on the island, the pressure's on Serge to make up his mind. Is it all a power game with Serge or does he really want to return to the stage?
It's open season for the clash of the artisticTitans. Rehearsals begin but they hardly get beyond the first scene of act one, they both want to play Alceste, the central character and have differing views on the play's interpretation. Serge mirrors Alceste's views on the awfulness of the human race and Gauthier, the celebrity ego drenched TV dandy slightly wearing at the edges is discreet, civil and wants a trouble-free life. Artistic differences and competition for the affections of Francesca (Maya Sansa), an Italian going through a messy divorce who's selling her house through a bad-tempered estate agent (Ged Marlon) friend of Serge add to the comedy of manners.
'Cycling with Moliere' is an intelligent, fascinating and witty take on Moliere's 17th century comedy, 'The Misanthrope'. Character confined with a witty script, treachery, deceit and selfishness abound on the Ile de Re.