Sexual Chronicles of a French Family

Sexual Chronicles of a French Family

Mathias Melloul as Romain, Stephan Hersoen as Herve, Leila Denio as Marie, Nathan Duval as Pierre, and Valerie Maes as Claire in Jean-Marc Barr and Pascal Arnold's SEXUAL CHRONICLES OF A FRENCH FAMILY. Copyright: Toloda, Monkey Pack Films and Super Sonic Productions, an IFC Midnight release.

Sexual Chronicles of a French Family

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Sexual Chronicles of a French Family (2012)

Also Known As: Chroniques Sexuelles d'Une Famille d'Aujourd'Hui

Opened: 06/01/2012 Limited

IFC Center06/01/2012 - 06/07/20127 days

Trailer: Click for trailer

Websites: Home

Genre: French Comedy (French w/English subtitles)

Rated: Unrated


After getting caught filming himself masturbating in biology class, Romain unwittingly breaks through his family's treatment of sex as a taboo subject matter. The incident triggers his mother, Claire, to open a dialogue with the family, encouraging them to explore their sexuality more freely and openly. As each of these family members push the boundaries of their sensuality, SEXUAL CHRONICLES OF A FRENCH FAMILY paints a portrait of three generations taking their next steps in life.

Director's Statement

The pornography industry in the last thirty years has come to totally dominate, almost exclusively representing sexuality in our society. The recognizable narrative codes and graphic film grammar have become predominant in the perception of what sexual relations must reflect in reality nowadays.

We are not here to judge this industry, one that generates a more important profit than Hollywood itself. Twenty years ago, cable television attracted many loyal customers because they offered porno and today the vast number of highly specialized porno websites (all genres, either by membership or free access for anybody and at all ages) are attaining growing audiences on the Internet. Yes, a human being should have the right to be exposed to these images, but if all that is offered with these images is the predominance of one point of view (that of the porno industry) then it should be questioned.

The questioning we explore is in the will to offer sexual images guided by a narration that involves the characters in their most intimate moments. To put it plainly, we film these characters making love. We are not filming sexual athletes or the acrobatics of their different sexual positions. The journey of each of our characters includes their time of physical love, their moments of sexual pleasure where the erotic current circulating in their bodies is alive, evident by their expressions and the look their eyes. We try to mimic life and make these intimate acts emotional.

We are taking up the torch passed on by some directors of the 1970's who attempted to take steps in this direction, at a time when civil society also seemed to be more open about questioning sexual representation. Morality is not necessarily on the side of the censors who preach by worn out principles in dealing with access to pornography. Morality should be of the living. With this film we declare, loud and clear, that to leave the task of sexual representation solely to the porno industry is a mistake.

We explore the sex life of each individual in this family, in their daily lives, up front and intimate, each in their own secret gardens. There is nothing else at stake in the narration because our wish is to create a credible mirror of life so the film becomes a voyage into our own sexuality.

Forty years after sexual liberation, how has communication on sex evolved for modern families? Does the family circle inquire into the fulfillment in each other lives, across three generations? Does pleasure remain only a male dominated activity or is it shared equally between the man and the woman? How to film intercourse keeping it real and almost like a documentary? How has the new camera technology (cell-phones, webcams, etc.) altered the way we represent and share our intimacy? Are our sexual moments, those between consenting adults, the last place we have to test our freedom?

There was no other calculation in the desire to make this film and share it with the widest audience possible. So, "Vive le sexe, Vive l'amour! (since we want to make love) and Vive le cinema." Sex deserves to be a sacred activity like it deserves to be a fabulously playful diversion.

-- Jean-Marc Barr and Pascal Arnold