La Vie en Rose or ‘La Mome’, Oliver Dahan’s film about the life of French singer Edith Piaf was released on Februray 14, 2007 in France. The amount of energy packed into Marion Cotillard’s performance is positively nuclear. Rolling Stone’s review called it a performance for the ages.
Sometimes a role and an actress are pre-ordained to meet. Such is the case with Cotillard and her portrayal of Edith Piaf. If you have any questions about the magnitude of performance, pick up a copy of Claude Lelouche’s Edith & Marcel featuring Evelyn Bouix as Edith Piaf.
This isn’t a role prescribed for the faint of heart. I remember when Edith & Marcel had pre-screenings in NYC and in particular handing out questionnaires to a ‘test audience’ at a Long Island shopping mall. No questionnaires are necessary after watching Cotillard wring out every ounce of emotion – from wherever actors and actresses find this concentrated oil.
This is a quote from an interview with Cotillard posted on Collider.com
that says it all “that’s what I am here in that job for, amongst many things, to be able to share this and to feel like there’s a circle of emotion in sharing.”
Regarding filming in Paris at the Olympia, Cotillard says: ” the special moment was in the Olympia when we shot the last scene, because it was her theatre. She saved the Olympia several times from bankruptcy, and it’s told in the movie. And that day, of course, all the extras, all the audience were French. There were many people who had known her. Her best friend was there. So it was one of the most incredible days of the whole adventure. I don’t know how to describe this, but yeah, we were gathered all together by something.”
Read the rest of the interview on Collider.com
For those of you that haven’t made acquaintance with the songs of Edith Piaf such as ‘La Vie en Rose’, the singer also known as ‘Little Sparrow’ is the epitome of the Parisian kid that struggles from rags to riches, never sells out, but eventually self-destructs from the combination of high living, emotional torment and – well – just life – lived to the max.
As I’ve mentioned in a past post, there are some singers who refuse to sing Edith Piaf songs – considering it to be ‘bad luck’. I won’t spoil anything for you if you plan to see the film – you’ll understand after having seen the film, but it is somewhat ironic that this might be the year a Parisian-born actress wins the Academy award for ‘Best Actress’ during the writer’s strike – when no one will be able to say a single word about it.
Regardless of what the Academy Awards decide next month, Cotillard has won Parilogue’s vote for Best Actress.