Going Places (1974 film)
|Directed by||Bertrand Blier|
|Produced by||Paul Claudon|
|Screenplay by||Bertrand Blier
|Based on||Les Valseuses by Bertrand Blier|
|Music by||Stéphane Grappelli|
|Edited by||Kenout Peltier|
|20 March 1974|
Going Places is a 1974 French comedy-drama film directed by Bertrand Blier, starring Miou-Miou, Gérard Depardieu and Patrick Dewaere. Its original title is Les Valseuses, which translates into English as "the waltzers", a vulgar French slang term for "the testicles". It tells the story of two sociopathic men who travel around France, commit petty crimes, assault people, trick women into meaningless sex and carry out mischievous plots. The film is based on Blier's own novel with the same title. The American film critic Roger Ebert described Going Places as "the most misogynistic movie I can remember".
Jean-Claude and Pierrot spend their days harassing women and committing petty crimes. One day, they impulsively steal a hairdresser's car and go on a joyride. When they return the car, the hairdresser confronts them with a gun. Attempting to flee, Pierrot is shot in the groin. Jean-Claude disarms the hairdresser and grabs his pistol as well as his female assistant, Marie-Ange. The three flee in the hairdresser's car. Not wanting to risk arrest by going to a hospital, they break into the home of a local doctor and force him to treat Pierrot's wound, then rob him of all his cash. The trio then drive to a chop-shop outside of Paris. Jean-Claude offers Marie-Ange to the owner as payment for his services. The chop-shop owner rapes Marie-Ange, and is disappointed to discover that she doesn't mind being used as a sex object and doesn't fight back. Nonetheless, he agrees to sabotage the hairdresser's car so that, after they return it to the hairdresser, he will have a fatal accident. They return the car and drop off Marie-Ange, then go on the run.
They take a train to the coast. On the train, they encounter a lone mother with her baby, and sexually assault her. They arrive at a coastal holiday town, deserted at this time of year. They break into a local house and live there for several days. Pierrot is worried that his sex life has been ruined due to his groin injury.
- Gérard Depardieu as Jean-Claude
- Patrick Dewaere as Pierrot
- Miou-Miou as Marie-Ange
- Jeanne Moreau as Jeanne Pirolle
- Brigitte Fossey as Woman in the train
- Christian Alers as Jacqueline's father Henri
- Michel Peyrelon as The Doctor
- Gérard Boucaron as Carnot
- Jacques Chailleux as Jacques Pirolle
- Eva Damien as Doctor's wife
- Dominique Davray as Ursula
- Isabelle Huppert as Jacqueline
- Marco Perrin as Supermarket inspector
- Jacques Rispal as Maton
- Claude Vergues as Merian
- Thierry Lhermitte as the Doorman
- Gérard Jugnot as Holyday-Maker with Family
Bertrand Blier based the screenplay on his own novel Les Valseuses, which had been published by éditions Robert Laffont in 1972. The film was produced by CAPAC, UPF and Prodis. Principal photography took place from 16 August to 24 October 1973. Locations were used in Valence, Drôme.
The film premiered in France on 20 March 1974. It was released in the United States on 13 May the same year and the United Kingdom on 23 October 1975. The film had a total of 5,726,031 admissions in France where it was the 3rd highest grossing film of the year.
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote: "Despite its occasional charm, its several amusing moments and the touching scenes played by Jeanne Moreau, Going Places is a film of truly cynical decadence. It's also, not incidentally, the most misogynistic movie I can remember; its hatred of women is palpable and embarrassing. ... I came away from Going Places feeling that I'd spent two hours in the company of a filmmaker I would never want to meet." Los Angeles Times' Kevin Thomas wrote in 1990, when the film was re-released in Los Angeles cinemas: "Blier has gone on to a notable and distinctive career, but as worthy (and quirky) as his subsequent films have been, none have packed the punch of his debut film, which he based on his own novel. ... The road/buddy movie was scarcely new 16 years ago, but Blier's strategies in the telling of his sexual odyssey remain fresh, outrageous and inspired." Thomas continued: "Jean-Claude is the precursor of all the earthy, passionate men Depardieu has brought to life on the screen. What's more, Blier is interested more in Jean-Claude and Pierrot as sexual chauvinists than as petty criminals, and as they learn to be more considerate lovers they become more likable. Above all, they embody the sure-fire appeal of all movie anti-heroes, free spirits who live entirely for the moment and at all times follow their impulse."
- "Valseuse". Reverso. Retrieved 17 July 2011.
- "Les Valseuses". bifi.fr (in French). Cinémathèque Française. Retrieved 2015-05-10.
- Ebert, Roger (1974-05-13). "Going Places". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2015-05-10.
- Thomas, Kevin (1990-08-10). "Movie Review: A Sexual Odyssey in 'Going Places'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2015-05-10.