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“Lost illusions”: Xavier Giannoli finally adapts Balzac in all his grandeur

Yes Eugenie Grandet de Bazac has often been adapted, again recently it is the first time for Lost illusions (except TV), located in the teeming Paris of the Restoration. Xavier Giannoli, whose film comes out Wednesday, October 20, has taken the most meticulous care in its adaptation, to achieve what some already qualify as a masterpiece. With Benjamin Voisin, Cécile de France, Vincent Lacoste, Xavier Dolan, Jeanne Balibar and Gérard Depardieu, the film goes beyond its promises.

In the years 1820-30, Lucien (Benjamin Voisin), a young poet from Angoulême, left for Paris thanks to his protectress (Cécile de France) of whom he was the lover. Alone, he confronts publishers and the press, with the financial support of his patron. His encounters make him understand that everything can be bought and everything is sold, the press, art, politics and love. Passing from fame to baseness, will Lucien survive his illusions in the agitated Paris of the Restoration?

Major act of The Human Comedy in 90 volumes by Balzac, initiatory novel of the triptych that he constitutes with The Two Poets and Splendors and miseries of the courtiers, Lost illusions is, according to Proust, Balzac’s best novel. A literary masterpiece, Xavier Giannoli draws all the meaning and the romantic, in a staging and in images that breathe all Balzac.

Finally Balzac in all his splendor! Giannoli, adapter and director, evokes in the introduction of his Illusions, The Two Poets, where Lucien works in the printing press of his friend Séchard in Angoulême. The story quickly travels to Paris, where, starting from nothing, Lucien will climb the ladder of fame. A rough and ready-made character, confronts the codes of Parisian society, editors and journalists who rub shoulders with politics and the arts. In the midst of the Restoration, after the fall of the First Empire, the waltz between republicans and monarchists was in full swing. After his glorious enthronement in the media seraglio, Lucien will pay the price.

Cécile de France and Benjamin Voisin & nbsp; in "Lost illusions" by Xavier Giannoli (2021).  (Roger Arpajou / 2021 CURIOSA FILMS - GAUMONT - FRANCE 3 CINEMA - GABRIEL INC. - UMEDIA)

Witness and historian of his time, Balzac has established a gallery of portraits unique in literature that goes beyond historical limits. Its universality is obvious and the power games at work in Lost illusions echo our contemporary turpitudes. Any provincial going to Paris should read the novel, so timeless it is. If the codes have changed, the background remains the same. Xavier Giannoli found the perfect fit across the board in a sumptuous adaptation. What would be wonderful is to shoot the sequel, Splendors and miseries of the courtiers, even more powerful in its dramatic content. A lost illusion?

The poster of & nbsp;"Lost illusions" by Xavier Giannoli (2021).  (GAUMONT DISTRIBUTION)

Kind : Drama
Director : Xavier Giannoli
Actors : Benjamin Voisin, Cécile de France, Vincent Lacoste, Xavier Dolan, Jeanne Balibar and Gérard Depardieu
Country : France
Duration : 2h30
Exit : October 20, 2021
Distributer : Gaumont Distribution

Synopsis : Lucien is a young poet unknown in 19th century France. He has high hopes and wants to forge a destiny. He left the family printing house in his native province to try his luck in Paris, on the arm of his protector. Soon delivered to himself in the fabulous city, the young man will discover the backstage of a world doomed to the law of profit and pretense. A human comedy where everything is bought and sold, literature like the press, politics like feelings, reputations like souls. He will love, he will suffer, and survive his illusions.

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