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2008 Festival Feature Films (March 28-30)

La Vérité ou presque

French director Sam Karmann presents La Vérité ou presque with American author Stephen McCauley and French actress and lyricist Catherine Olson

director Sam Karmann screenplay Sam Karmann, Jérôme Beaujour based on the novel True Enough by Stephen McCauley, published by Washington Square Press producers Jean-Philippe Andraca, Christian Bérard starring André Dussollier, Karin Viard, François Cluzet, Sam Karmann running time 1 h 35 min although not rated, parental guidance suggested for viewers under 13


Anne is married to Thomas, who is attracted to Caroline, the young wife of Marc, the ex-husband of Anne, who herself has noticed the charms of Vincent, who is terribly jealous of Lucas. As for Rose-Marie, she knows that when desire comes knocking, it’s often deceit that answers the door.

And the truth in all this?

It’s that we can love forever, but not all the time. That’s true … enough.

A story of two people who couldn’t be more different, whom life and work unite by chance. One is a married woman, a TV show producer plagued by professional and sentimental doubts, the other a homosexual author of biographies on more or less forgotten artists, struggling with his latest work.

Sam Karmann

2007 Juste une heure by Virginie Peignien
2006 Talents Cannes 2006: Chant prénatal
  Talents Cannes 2006: Issues de secours
2005 Suzanne by Mona Achache
2004 Casablanca driver by Maurice Barthélemy
2003 A la petite semaine (VCU French Film Festival 12)
1999 Kennedy et moi
  H.E.C. 99 by Vincent Champagnac
1998 Ça reste entre nous by Martin Lamotte
1995 J’aime beaucoup ce que vous faites by Xavier Giannoli
1993 Cuisine et dépendances by Philippe Muyl

Stephen McCauley

2006 Alternatives to Sex
2001 True Enough
1996 The Man of the House
1992 The Easy Way Out
1987 The Object of My Affection

Catherine Olson

1999 Kennedy et moi by Sam Karmann

André Dussollier

2007 Trois singes by Claus Drexel
  Mon meilleur ennemi by Kevin Macdonald
  Le Crime est notre affaire by Pascal Thomas
2006 Ma place au soleil by Éric de Montalier
  Le Mas des alouettes by Paolo Taviani, Vittorio Taviani
  Cortex by Nicolas Boukhrief

Lemming by Dominik Moll

  Mon petit doigt m'a dit by Pascal Thomas
  Un ticket pour l’espace by Eric Lartigau
  Ne le dis à personne by Guillaume Canet
  Cœurs by Alain Resnais
2004 Agents secrets by Frédéric Schoendoerffer
  Un long dimanche de fiançailles by Jean-Pierre Jeunet
  36, quai des Orfèvres by Olivier Marchal
2002 Effroyables jardins by Jean Becker
2001 Tanguy by Etienne Chatiliez
2000 Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie Poulain (voice) by Jean-Pierre Jeunet
  Un crime au paradis by Jean Becker
1999 Les Enfants du marais by Jean Becker
1997 On connaît la chanson by Alain Resnais
1992 Un cœur en hiver by Claude Sautet
1985 Trois hommes et un couffin by Coline Serreau

Karin Viard

2007 Paris by Cédric Klapisch
2006 Les Ambitieux by Catherine Corsini
  La Face cachée by Bernard Campan
2005 La Tête de maman by Carine Tardieu
Le Rôle de sa vie by François Favrat (VCU French Film Festival 13)
  L’Ex-femme de ma vie by Josiane Balasko

Le Couperet by Costa-Gavras

1994 La Haine by Mathieu Kassovitz
1991 Délicatessen by Marc Caro, Jean-Pierre Jeunet
1990 Tatie Danielle by Etienne Chatiliez

François Cluzet

2007 Détrompez-vous by Bruno Dega
  Paris by Cédric Klapisch
  En vous remerciant by Frédéric Proust
2006 Ma place au soleil by Éric de Montalier
  L'Heure d'été by Olivier Assayas
  Les Liens du sang by Jacques Maillot
2005 Quatre étoiles by Christian Vincent
  Ne le dis à personne by Guillaume Canet
2004 The Lost Domain (le domaine perdu) by Raoul Ruiz
2003 Je suis un assassin by Thomas Vincent
1997 Rien ne va plus by Claude Chabrol
1995 Le Hussard sur le toit by Jean-Paul Rappeneau
1993 L’Enfer by Claude Chabrol
1989 Trop belle pour toi by Bertrand Blier

Comments by Sam Karmann

La Vérité ou presqueSome of the lines came from the book, others didn’t. While Jérôme took care of the psychology, the dramatic art of the script, I worked as an actor, which in any event I remain. I wanted it to be drafted, but playful, actable; the fewest possible words for the greatest possible meaning. And I wanted people to feel the humanity of the characters, whatever their faults or contradictions. Everyone can see themselves in the humanity of characters, a fundamental element to my mind.

I can also give some situations a tone more akin to comedy. Give it a little dose of cynicism, as is often the case in life. So no one is really nice or mean in this story. Even my character, theoretically beyond reproach, has a little dose of perversity, if you’re observant. As a viewer, I like it when the work isn’t cut out for me. I prefer decoding, an active role, like with a thriller. There’s no suspense here, although … The information is distilled, you’re meant to guess, things are revealed through a retort or a look.

Interview with André Dussollier (actor)

How would you define your character, the most honest of the bunch?
Vincent is closest to the truth because he overcame things he had to confront earlier than the others. La Vérité ou presqueHe even talks about it when he explains that he was forced to admit his homosexuality at a rather young age, in an unfavorable environment. So he is the most authentic, the one who wears the fewest masks in life, not hesitating to say what he thinks. We feel he is calm, balanced, above his emotions, less vulnerable, and he becomes, in particular for Anne, a revelation, and for the others, a sounding board they can go to and, in some cases, reveal themselves to. Because the truth is attractive.

Interview with Karin Viard (actress)

Your character, Anne, seems like a fighter, which is true enough, given that she is also lost. How do you see her?
She knows where she’s going, had to fight to get where she is, had to sacrifice a lot to obtain this professional success. La Vérité ou presqueAt the same time, she’s come to a difficult point in her personal life. She feels like a stranger in her own family, even to her child of whom she’s practically deprived; with a husband so perfect, who takes care of everything, who thinks he’s helping, but just stresses her out. Generally, all the characters are revealed through their interaction, like colors that appear gradually. They’re not exceptional, but are confronted with situations that make them touching in their vulnerability.




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