Les Feux de la Chandeleur

Watch Les Feux de la Chandeleur

  • 1972
  • 1 hr 35 min
  • 5.9  (295)

Les Feux de la Chandeleur is a French drama film from 1972 that tells the story of a woman named Violette (Annie Girardot), who returns to her hometown in the south of France after many years living in Paris. Violette is a successful businesswoman, but she is tired of her city life and seeks refuge in her childhood home. Her mother has recently passed away and she needs some time to heal and reconnect with her roots.

When Violette arrives in her hometown, she is disappointed to discover that the house is in disrepair and that there is no electricity. Her only source of warmth and light is a big bonfire that is lit every year on Candlemas Day (Chandeleur), a Christian holiday that marks the end of winter. Violette decides to stay in the house and she slowly starts to rebuild it while also getting to know the locals.

One of the locals is Antoine (Jean Rochefort), a man who works in the nearby vineyards and who is also going through a rough patch. Violette and Antoine start a tentative romance, but both of them are guarded and uncertain about what they want. They are both struggling with personal demons and traumas from their past, and they need each other to heal.

Violette also befriends Marie (Claude Jade), a young woman who lives in the village with her mother and grandmother. Marie is shy and reserved, and she has a secret talent for singing. Violette encourages Marie to pursue her dreams and helps her to find the courage to perform in public.

The film explores themes of nostalgia, memory, and the importance of community. Violette is torn between her love for her hometown and her ambition to succeed in the city. She also has unresolved issues with her father, who left her and her mother when she was young. Antoine is haunted by his experience in Algeria, where he fought in the war and witnessed atrocities. Marie is struggling to find her own identity and to break free from the expectations of her family and her community.

The performances in the film are excellent, especially Annie Girardot's portrayal of Violette. She conveys both the strength and vulnerability of the character, and she has great chemistry with both Jean Rochefort and Claude Jade. The cinematography is also beautiful, capturing the rugged beauty of the countryside and the warmth of the bonfire.

Overall, Les Feux de la Chandeleur is a moving and thoughtful film that explores complex themes with nuance and sensitivity. It is a tribute to the power of community and the resilience of the human spirit.

Les Feux de la Chandeleur
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  • Release Date
  • Runtime
    1 hr 35 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.9  (295)