Saturday, April 01, 2006


The Corsican Affair - essential adult reading

Petillon's best-selling French comic book "L'enquete Corse" is mainly for adults, I suspect, and is dark, irreverent, highly political and hilarious. It has now been made into a film, which is if anything even funnier but less penetrating. Read or see one of them if you can.

It's the story of a hapless private detective from Paris who is sent to Corsica to find a certain Ange Leoni to give him glad tidings about an inheritance. Unbeknown to the detective, Ange Leoni is a well known Corsican nationalist and in seeking him out, he upsets the balance between the fiercely independent, secretive people in the local community and the forces of law and order. Chaos ensues and, as the plot unfolds, many Corsican stereotypes emerge: some of these rang a few bells with me, but others I think only exist in the minds of people living in mainland France. And the number of explosions per night is certainly an exaggeration!

The Corsicans interviewed over the film credits mostly seemed to have enjoyed the film and felt that, on balance, perhaps Corsica was as it was portrayed. And the Island people I've spoken to also enjoyed it. It's great to know that here we have a people (like those of us who have Irish blood) who can laugh at themselves a little.

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