Children of Paradise

Children of Paradise ★★★★

In Paris in the early nineteenth century, the boisterous Boulevard du Crime, full of street artists and theatres, is the scene of love stories marked by an inevitable fate and fatality. Garance is a beautiful woman who falls in love at first sight with Baptiste Deburau, a talented pantomime artist who gives life to the mythical figure of Pierrot. Baptiste's shyness prevents him from approaching the woman he so dearly loves and she finds refuge in the charismatic actor Frédérick Lemaître. Some other characters enter the scene, the hopeful Nathalie, the rebel Pierre-François Lacenaire, the vain Comte Édouard de Montray, and thus jealousy, banality and pride, unrequited love, revenge and frustration are combined. Les Enfants du Paradis is theatre as a representation of everyday drama and the experiences as a nurturing source of the performers' work on stage. The three protagonists represent the tragic love triangle of the commedia dell'arte, Pierrot, Harlequin and Columbine; their lives and their art are intertwined and they bestow on us poetry, some devastating moments and other magical ones. At the same time, the film is a great homage to theatre that serves as a metaphor for life and love, a space for creative freedom and in which the human spirit pours out its desires, its uncertainty, its pain and its joy of living.
A beautiful film and an intense love story full of melancholy that pervades the viewer; perhaps Lacenaire is right and there is no better fate than not loving anyone or being loved, for only in this way can one be free, but is there anyone capable of resisting the great longings of the soul?

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