Biography

From the Flanders (i) magazine

Claude Lelouch discovers Come As You Are

The legendary French director of such classic films as A Man and a Woman (Un homme et une femme), And Now My Love (Toute une vie) and Bolero (Les uns et les autres) talks about his Flanders film favourite, Geoffrey Enthoven’s Come as You Are (Hasta la vista), and what the film did to him when he saw it at the fortieth edition of the Montreal World Film Festival last year. ‘I have rarely got such a kick out of discovering a film that was so completely unexpected,’ the filmmaker admits.

Come As You Are at the Arras Film Festival, November 2011. Claude Lelouch (second from the left)‘I am in this multiplex at the Montreal World Film Festival. While I am waiting to go to a master class I’m giving, I decide to go into one of the cinemas at random. A film is starting and I have no idea what I am about to see. Nothing out of the ordinary up to now.

As I sit down in my seat, I am totally oblivious to the fact that it is about to roll away and that I am going to be thrown into the world of those people for whom I rarely spare a second thought. But it is the exact opposite that happens: I find a blind man staring at me through the screen of my prejudices.’

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Published on Friday 10 February 2012

Boys just wanna have…

Geoffrey Enthoven’s taste for taboo subjects, such as old age, depression and death, sometimes makes his films difficult to finance. Not so Come As You Are (AKA Hasta La Vista), the tale of three young disabled men who go on a road trip to Spain In order to lose their virginities in a specialist brothel. ‘The money fell out of the sky’, he says. ‘Everybody wanted to see this film.’

Text: Ian Mundell

Still from Come As You ArePart of the attraction, he thinks, is that a common experience lurks beneath the quirky storyline. ‘Ultimately, it’s just the story of three guys who want to score on holiday. I think everyone can recognise that.’ The starting point for the film was a BBC documentary, For One Night Only, which followed Asta Philpot and two other disabled men on a journey to just such a brothel in Spain. Philpot, who was born with arthrogryposis and is unable to move most of his body, had a life-changing experience losing his virginity in this way and wanted to share the experience with other people who had never known sexual intimacy. ‘The guy is so positive,’ Enthoven recalls. ‘The film had a huge effect on us.’ The idea of adapting the story for a feature film came from Mariano Vanhoof, Enthoven’s partner in production company Fobic Films. Vanhoof contacted Philpot, who loved the idea, and they developed a treatment together. This was turned into a screenplay by Pierre de Clercq, well-known in Flanders for his work on the TV series and film Stormforce and the feature comedy A Perfect Match. ‘It was the first time I’d worked with Pierre and it went really well. I think this is his best script,’ Enthoven says.

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Published on Thursday 28 July 2011

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