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The members of a clique in Paris have three things in common: their love for 1950s rock'n'-roll, their working-class origin, and their low status in society. On the weekend, these friends set off for a rock concert in Le Havre. The entire French rockabilly scene is meeting there. Lots of beer is drunk and someone starts a fistfight. The girlfriend of one of the young men wants to hang out with the group; she more or less becomes their scapegoat.

"In France, depiction of 1950s youth culture is limited to a very few films in the '60s and a few clichéd, third-class productions from the '80s. No wonder French film is hardly interested in the characters Lucile Chaufour portrayed in her first full-length film "Violent Days". The film is neither reactionary nor revolutionary, but is something special, not least because its plot is set in an indeterminate past. The director uses a quite fitting black-and-white, so that the viewer finds it difficult to place the time (it could just as well allude to the militant workers of the '70s). The workers' milieu, which has increasingly weakened in recent decades as a consequence of economic change, melds quite naturally with the rockabilly scene, an autonomous cult movement, often sneered at, that arose in the proletariat. Lucile Chaufour lets the protagonists have their say directly, sometimes in front of the camera, sometimes offscreen, thereby achieving more credibility than with construed, fictitious scenes. The result is a film in which the bluntness of the depiction harmonizes perfectly with these underprivileged youths violence as everyday pastime. And last but not least: emerging from this gloomy, melancholy, old-fashioned atmosphere is the beautiful, tragic portrait of a woman, played by Serena Lunn." Julien Welter

Production: Agar 31 (Paris)

Screenplay: Lucile Chaufour

Cinematographers: Dominique Texier, Nicolas Eprendre, Bertrand Mouly

Sound: Xavier Pierouel, Raoul Fruhauf

Composers: Lucile Chaufour, Thomas Couzinier

Cast: Frédéric Beltran, Franck Musard, François Mayet, Serena Lunn

Format/screen ratio: 35mm, 1:1.66, b/w

Running time: 80 min., 25 frames/sec..

Language: French

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
  • Logo des Programms NeuStart Kultur