October 4, 2008


This French film is well-constructed and beautifully acted, but, alas, is a "message film." What is the message? (Spoiler alert!--but you will probably guess the ending in the first twenty minutes, as I did.) Juliette (the ageless Kristin Scott Thomas who speaks French through the whole movie!) just got out of prison after serving fifteen years for killing her six-year-old son. Yup: "Mercy-killing." He had a painful terminal illness.

She goes to stay with her sister, Lea (Elsa Zylberstein), who--huge logic gap--didn't know her nephew was terminally ill (even though he would scream in pain and could barely move until he was fatally injected by his doctor-mom). Once Lea finds out that it was a mercy-killling, all tension and dark clouds vanish. (Why DID she think her sister did it?) What Juliette did was OK.

I was really enjoying this film (hoping my guess was wrong), but I thought it strange that this French movie was filled with children everywhere (I mean, this is France, right?) Well, the nation doth protest too much. When we are cut off from the Source of Life, the ONLY choice left is death. A culture of death. That parades as a culture of life.

"I've Loved You So Long" joins the growing catalogue of euthanasia films (and I shan't be surprised if it wins an award): "Million Dollar Baby," "The Sea Inside," etc.


  1. Anonymous5:11 PM

    Hello. I wondered at the logic gaps in this film, too. I am curious as to why you remarked upon the number of children in the film as if you expect not to see them in French films. I've always thought of France as having a strong and distinctive culture of childhood.

  2. Well, I supposed I was being rather sarcastic. The French birthrate is way below replacement, or, as the late Fr. Steven Barham said: "lots of sex and no babies." Be that as it may, there is a resurgence in Catholicism/Christianity in France at the moment (and with it a resurgence of births).
    It seemed to me that the film was trying to say: We love children, we really do! We're really pro-life! See? Kids! We just don't want them (or anyone) to suffer.

  3. Of course, there are plenty of births to French immigrants of the Islamic faith. I believe France is now 1/3 Islamic.