The Golden Age
- Jean-Baptiste Alazard
- 68 min
- Vincent Le Port (stank production)
Titou will soon be forty. He lives high up in a sheep shed in the Corbières mountains. With Soledad, who lives in a nearby caravan, they make their own wine, compose their music, live their love in step with the seasons – much as you might cultivate resistance.
L’Age d’or is the final part of a documentary trilogy that Jean-Baptiste Alazard called La Tierce des paumés. Yet, the lost trio of the title are not so much lost as intentionally astray in the landscapes of the French countryside. Reversing the deadly acceleration to which the world is promised, they have chosen to live differently – vagabondage, solitude, close to the nourishing earth whose forgotten merits they taste. In their forties, Titou and Soledad came to live under the cliffs at Corbiere in a caravan and sheep pen, without running water or electricity. The days see them busying themselves with the vines, selling the wine they produce in neighbouring villages, doing menial tasks using machines from another century, or walking to the huge wind turbines which, in this landscape, resemble the vestiges of a literally extra-terrestrial life; in the evening, in flickering candlelight, they play music, discuss with passing friends, and sometimes talk vaguely about their choice. By refraining from asking them the question, the film relieves them of having to justify an existence which, though rough and heavy-going, exudes a sweet floating fragrance of self-evidence. It is more a matter of accompanying them, amicably, and especially of having the graininess of the image convey the inebriation brought by the wind, the springtime light, the dream of a golden age that may be a promise rather than a memory, and which is best summarised by the words of Areski and Brigitte Fontaine, fraternally slipped into the soundtrack: “Silence will refresh my memory / A bird will sing for me the final song / And my eyes will finally open onto the black night / Where the burning harvest plays with the ocean.”
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Jean-Baptiste Alazard was born in 1985 in Aveyron. After studying at La Fémis, he joined the collective La France Entière in 2011 and set out with them to find people who could be the figures of the new era: its dissidents, philosophers, technicians, emperors, priestesses and prophets.