Frédéric Pierrot as Charles;
Samuel Theis as Victor;
Sophie Quinton as Aurélie;
Emmanuelle Bercot as Martine
C'est la vie - what an interesting journey this young man is going to have!
Told at three crucial periods of his life: the [always awkward] coming out, the [almost immediate] relationship, the aftermath [when love remains...but, the sex goes to whoever].
The writers have - definitely - thought outside of the box. This is not your stereotypical, smooth-sailing, all sing & dancing gay love-story. At its core, this addresses that kind of relationship [both heterosexual and homosexual] that is [usually] greeted with a deeply furrowed brow...yes, it's that old hot potato...the intergenerational relationship.
Also known as pederasty...not a pretty word...and, here lies the rub, between man & boy, legal or illegal...and, that other hot potato...the [statutory] age of consent. Victor is nearing his 18th birthday, Charles may [or may not] be reported to the police. It's France, in the 80s, so different to what it is now!
The character arc of Charles is a revelation...from a supposed cruising-ground sleaze-bag, to a caring/guiding/supportive partner...to a world-wise, relatable [adopted] father...all awhile carrying the burden of being HIV+. A complex character indeed...wrought to life by Frédéric Pierrot's perfectly pitched performance.
The third part of Victor's story is - by far - the weakest - it takes a god-almighty leap forward...perhaps, too far. His adopted son is now a young man...and, they really don't get on one iota. It really does get to the point that you can help but think...does he regret adopting all those years ago? Possibly, that was the intention. Parenthood: It's not all peaches and cream!
Proud is a complex and challenging watch. It certainly addresses those issues - and, ventures into areas where - few writers dare to tread...for that reason alone, this is an essential inclusion to the ever-growing pantheon of [important] LGBT films.
In 1981, it was still illegal to be homosexual in France. Today, same-sex marriage is recognized and it paved the way for adoption. PROUD tells the story of Charles, Victor and Diego, three generations of the same family who emerge as symbol of their time.