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Embodying Empathy and Social Justice

L’abbé Pierre - A Century of Devotion


Genre: Biography, Drama, History
Year Released: 2023
Runtime: 2h 18m
Director(s): Frédéric Tellier
Writer(s): Frédéric Tellier, Olivier Gorce
Cast: Benjamin Lavernhe, Emmanuelle Bercot, Michel Vuillermoz, Antoine Laurent, Alain Sachs, Leïla Muse, Malik Amraoui, Chloé Stefani
Where To Watch: premiering May 26 at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival (French release: November 15, 2023)

RAVING REVIEW: Prepare for an epic tale of selflessness and humanity in the realm of L'ABBÉ PIERRE. This film, created by Frédéric Tellier, showcases the intriguing life journey of Henri Groues, known to the world as Abbé Pierre. Pierre, a privileged man turned priest, took an unexpected detour when the Second World War swept across the globe. L'ABBÉ PIERRE beautifully navigates his life story, tracing the poignant hues of battle and sorrow interwoven with a robust spirit of unity.

This is not just a movie, it's a revelation of Abbé Pierre's global impact. The narrative reveals him standing shoulder to shoulder with revered personalities like Albert Einstein and Charlie Chaplin, showcasing his influence beyond the borders of France. The story honors his genuine compassion that touched the lives of countless people, etching his name firmly in the annals of history.

L'ABBÉ PIERRE brings to light the multi-faceted character of Abbé Pierre, offering a deeper look into his life as a Resistance fighter, lawmaker, and tireless advocate for people experiencing homelessness. This film has earned its place at the prestigious 2023 Cannes Film Festival and will hopefully spread the story of a man who never sought to be known.

The stellar ensemble featuring Benjamin Lavernhe, Emmanuelle Bercot, and Michel Vuillermoz lends to this film's narrative through powerful performances. As the storyline examines the less-explored aspects of Abbé Pierre's life, we see a picture of a man near legend status.

The film's director, Tellier, focuses on detail and in-depth character portrayal. He cites the thirst to understand the depth of Abbé Pierre's life. Extensive literature, articles, and personal anecdotes from Laurent Desmard, Abbé Pierre's confidant, have shaped the narrative.

Creating L'ABBÉ PIERRE was a labor of love, demanding countless hours in script development alone. The lack of detailed accounts of Abbé Pierre's remarkable feats called for a narrative shift, focusing on depicting the man as he was rather than creating an idolized image. Desmard's first-hand accounts and unique stories about Abbé Pierre have infused life into this portrayal.

L'ABBÉ PIERRE does more than chronicle the life of a remarkable man. It celebrates the relentless spirit of Abbé Pierre, a man who, despite physical frailties, stayed committed to an impossible mission—the story weaves through his life's conflicts, struggles, and contradictions with captivating flair. This film goes beyond telling one man’s story; it shows the importance of empathy and social justice in a world that has put that on the back burner.

Get ready to have your heartstrings tugged, your mind stimulated, and your spirit uplifted by the story of a man who made the world a better place. Ultimately, L'ABBÉ PIERRE will leave you cheering for the man and the message.

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[photo courtesy of THE PR FACTORY/SND GROUPE]

Chris Jones
Entertainment Editor

Chris Jones is the Mail Entertainment Editor covering Movies and Television topics. He is from Washington, Illinois, and is the owner, writer, and editor of Overly Honest Reviews.