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Beneath the Rooftops of Paris

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Beneath the Rooftops of Paris

Sous les toits de Paris
  • France
  • 2007
  • 98 minutes
  • Drama

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Acclaimed Kurdish director Hiner Saleem (Vodka Lemon, Dol) takes the reins once again for his seventh feature outing in this offbeat drama.

French screen legend Michel Piccoli (I'm Going Home) stars as Marcel, an octogenarian Parisian man who inhabits a decrepit and filthy top-tiered flat in the City of Lights, initially with his younger friend Amar (Maurice Benichou). The men experience their final months together as roommates one sticky, sweltering summer. Their days are littered with resolutely small, almost fleeting pleasures, such as consortions with a waitress, Therese (Mylene Demongeot) in a nearby café and temporary respites from the suffocating heat wave that is closing in on Paris via brief dips in the community swimming pool. As time roles on, however, Marcel's life grows unbearably difficult; Amar hearkens off to greener pastures, and as autumn spells an end to the summer, the elderly man's health deteriorates to the point of rendering his life utterly unbearable. Most problematic is the fact that no one seems to stay in his life for any length of time - friends come and go with alarming rapidity, leaving Marcel to fend for himself.