This weekend I saw The Intouchables at Paris Theater, and WOW. It is now one of my favorite movies. The Intouchables is about a wealthy French quadriplegic who takes on a man from the projects as his caretaker, forming an unlikely friendship. Although his situation is a little sad, part of the reason Philippe (the quadriplegic) hires Driss as his caretaker is because he doesn’t pity him; he treats him like an actual human being–to the point where he even hands a cell phone to Philippe, forgetting that Philippe can’t move his arms. The Intouchables is beautifully done with the juxtaposition of two men from different social classes living and working together, and I enjoy the positive outlook despite being disabled.
Philippe and Driss help each other equally. Philippe provides a job, a place to stay, an income, and ultimately, a chance for a better future for Driss, and Driss brings humor and spirit back to Philippe’s life in addition to the standard caretaker duties. They infiltrate each others lives in other ways as well.
Philippe (in an unsnobbish way), educates Driss on high-brow art and music, and Driss helps instill more confidence in Philippe. Despite their vastly different social classes, they balance each other very well and are quite the comedic duo.
What is also refreshing about The Intouchables is that Philippe’s disability doesn’t hinder him from continuing doing what he loves. He still goes to art galleries, paragliding (no joke), Driss drives him around in his fast sports car, and Driss even goes as far as setting him up on a date. Yes it is true that life would be much much much more difficult if Philippe were not wealthy, but it is nice to see him able to actually live his life rather than being an immobile, depressed vegetable.
I am not the only one who loves this film. “”In just nine weeks after its release in France on 2 November 2011 it became the second most successful French film of all time.”” (Wikipedia). And, as if I needed any other reasons to love this film, one additional reason The Intouchables is so touching is because it is based on a true story. Be prepared to laugh throughout the film and leave with a warmed heart and a smile on your face. The Intouchables is a MUST SEE film.