Intouchables touched my heart.
This fact-based story brings us into the world of Philippe (François Cluzet), an aristocratic Frenchman who becomes a quadriplegic from a paragliding accident, and Driss (Omar Sy), a young man from the projects. Against all the advice and concerns of his friends and other staff members, Philippe hires Driss to be his live-in caretaker.
First of all, if you’re one of those people who don’t like subtitled films, trust me, Intouchables ought to be your one exception. My movie buddies and I were blown away — we LOVED this French box-office smash hit (more than a third of the people in France have seen this film.)
Deeply moving but not sad, this film does have its funny “Odd Couple” moments. Driss is a handsome, unruly and immature black man, a ne’er-do-well with a difficult personal history (an evidently criminal one); and Philippe is a multimillionaire who wants for nothing.
Each scene brings us closer into the growth of a most unlikely, lifelong friendship.
Among the scenes that have become favorites are the birthday party dance scene (Driss is drool worthy), Philippe’s initiation into marijuana smoking, and the thrills of a supercharged electric wheelchair. Best of all, filmgoers get an emotional wallop from experiencing the power of unconditional caring between these two people.
It’s a cinematic gift to see Philippe and Driss breathe life and meaning into each other’s existence and discover the empowerment that comes from respect, joy and (from my own viewpoint) having the financial resources to make your fiercest dreams come true.
If your town doesn’t have an art house theater where you can see it, be sure to place Intouchables on your rental wish list queue. Allez voir ce film!