This is a key work in the filmography of Claude Sautet, a masterful choral portrait of middle-class France, focusing on the mid-life personal, professional and social life of a few close friends whose relations are bound to be affected by each other's problems. Paul is an author blocked by lack of inspiration, Francoisis a physician who no longer believes in the ideals of Hippocrates, Vincent is a businessman facing bankruptcy. Francois' wife has had enough of him, Vincent's lover leaves him and his wife wants a divorce. The friendship becomes frayed at the ends, health is failing, and younger men come into the picture. Sautet handles all these characters with so much feeling, love and sympathy, that one cannot help longing for their kind of relationship while perceiving the crisis that will draw them apart. Some of the greatest French actors of the seventies offer the kind of performances that were rarely matched in the films of that period.
CLAUDE SAUTET – Trained as a painter and sculptor, later revealed himself as a music critic, before he graduated from the famous IDHEC film school in Paris. First known as a screenwriter and a script doctor that most French filmmakers would approach every time they needed help with their screenplays, he started his career as a director with several thrillers, before directing the richly complex “Les Choses De La Vie” (1970) featuring Michel Piccoli and Romy Schneider, two of the actors he was to include often in his subsequent films.He is considered one of the greatest French filmmakers of his time, with a predilection for dealing with the French middle class, displaying a rare understanding and perspicacity in the characters he put on screen. Among his best known films are “Vincent, Francois, Paul et Les Auters”, “Cesar et Rosalie”, “Un Coeur en Hiver” and “Nelly et Mr. Arnaud”, all of them included this year in Arava's tribute to his work.