With “Arise women!” by François Ruffin, little hands emerge from the shadows

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(AFP) – They are essential and yet invisible. In “Debout les femmes!”, The latest documentary by LFI deputy François Ruffin, on screens Wednesday, home helpers, maintenance workers and even those accompanying children with disabilities come out of the shadows.

In charge, with the LREM deputy Bruno Bonnell, of a parliamentary mission on “link professions”, the Somme deputy, already director of “Merci patron”, a satirical film on the group luxury LVMH, or even “J’veux du soleil”, devoted to yellow vests, immediately sees “a shot to play”.

“With Gilles (Perret, the co-director of the documentary), we wanted to make a film that takes place in the Assembly, since almost I have been a deputy “, he says, during the preview of his film, at the end of September, in Marseille, in the packed hall of the Toursky theater: but “basically, in the Assembly, nothing is happening, power is not in the Assembly”

This parliamentary mission therefore gives him the opportunity to “go outside, to collect the lives, the voices, the faces of these women in professions which are at the same time fascinating and hard “, then” to bring it back inside, to the National Assembly “.

The bet of the film is to provoke a “discourse, obviously on the social question – what are these professions, why there is no timetable, why there is no has no salary – but also a democratic discourse: what is this institution (of the National Assembly) for, how it malfunctions, how it is no longer a national representation “, continues the elected official.

Result: a “parliamentary road movie” featuring a “burlesque tandem” à la Laurel and Hardy between the Left Insubordinate and the entrepreneur Walker Bruno Bonnell, a real “movie character because ‘we don’t know if he’s nice or not, if we should like him or not, “quips Mr. Ruffin.

– “Class feminist film” –

From Dieppe to Amiens passing by r Abbeville, the improbable duo crisscrosses France, including in full confinement, to show the daily lives of the little hands of care, precarious workers, often part-time, earning less than the minimum wage despite the long working hours.

“But we like our job”, insists Martine, social worker, 860 monthly salary. “I could not have been able,” then intervenes the elderly lady she takes care of and to whom she has just put on her stockings: “Especially for the toilets”, she adds.

“These professions are invisible because basically all they do is what we don’t want to see: it’s the dirty, it’s the vulnerable, that ‘is the intimate “, explains the elected to AFP. It is the end of life too, a reality that many of these people are confronted with without having been prepared for it.

“The unconscious of society is that for centuries women have been doing this at home for free: taking care of the sick, children, the elderly; there, they do it outside, they are paid a little, they are not going to bother us any more! “, completes the director, claiming to have signed a “class feminist film”.

A work in the shadows, which the Covid crisis has suddenly brought to light, serving as “revealer “, according to him, to the essential nature of these service professions.

As in this scene where, in full confinement, the only trace of life in Dieppe, deserted and returned to the seagulls , is that of Delphine who goes to see an old lady immobilized for two years: “I have only that”, confides the latter, “every morning, we wonder if they will come back”.

“The thread of life is maintained u thanks to them, “pleads Mr. Ruffin, denouncing the” amnesia “of power in the face of these women, while” when everything collapsed, the government and the president clung to them “

The documentary was almost called “Les premiers de cordée contre -aque”. The heroines of the film preferred “Arise les femmes!”

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