INTERVIEW – The actor is showing the new film by François Favrat. It embodies a young Antoine forties who gradually discovers the truth about the death of his mother. A role both strong and very subtle on which the actor is back with franchise.
LE FIGARO. – After Mom or Dad and The Art of Fugue , you link with a third film about the family. Yet is it not very different from the previous two?
LAURENT LAFITTE. – Yes it’s true, there was also Sadness Club the previous year, an investigative film about the disappearance of a father. We must believe that this is a subject that interests me. But what I like is that it’s built like a thriller and it makes very breathless narrative structure. I like it when there is this very popular movie that allows efficient at the same time to address profound and even psychoanalytic themes. I like it when there is this mix of genres with different reading levels.
The film is very faithful to the novel by Tatiana de Rosnay? Have you read?
No, I have not read the book. I did not want to read it. I’m afraid of having the mind parasitized by the vision of the novelist. When you read a novel, it has very strong images that are part of our imagination. I wanted to have as the director François Favrat and scenario, his version of the story. I did not feel to shoot a remake of the story, a story I’d seen elsewhere. But Tatiana de Rosnay’s novel gave me, so I will read it now.
How did you approach the character of Antoine?
I think we look alike. I hope I would have acted like him in the same circumstances. I like to think I would have had the same courage to face the truth and my family before his contradictions. It’s as if my character would improve the situation. But it is courageous because he must not be afraid of losing people. Family stories are fascinating and heartbreaking because there is a lot of love. This is a mandatory form of love.
The quest for the truth of Antoine family comes at a pivotal moment in his life. One has the impression that he is lost and while he knows where he wants to go?
My character does not let anything. At times, he even feel paranoid, and he fears for his sanity as he feels they do not tell him everything. He continues to widen. It provides an explanation that naturally accepts because it has no reason to doubt it. But as long as he will not have the feeling of having discovered what really happened, it will not let go. It is very determined.
What gives him the strength to move forward and continue at any cost?
This is his temperament. He’s like that. He finds himself embroiled in a rather fascinating story. I, in his place, if I discovered new evidence about the past of my family, I would want to know more. From the moment you put the finger on what slows us down, we can only widen. Antoine spotted where it went wrong and from there, it darkens. He can not really back or he réinstallerait in denial. He must know the truth.
Antoine and Agathe sister approach the same situation very differently …
Agathe (Mélanie Laurent) wants to know the truth but it is very close to her father. She is afraid to him pain and disrupt the family because she knows that her mother’s death is a painful subject. She has hardly seen her mother since she was five years old at the time. She believes that the search for truth may stir up painful things for nothing. For Anthony, the need for truth is essential.
During the film, the quest for truth is as destructive as ultimately saving?
Yes, this is indeed the arguments Agathe , the sister of Anthony not to continue investigating. But Antoine did it for him. He needs to know, history, history, history of her mother, to know what really happened. From the moment he saw a gap, it can not act as if nothing happened and continue to maintain contacts with his family without going after the truth.