Jack et la mécanique du coeur ("Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart")
Official Selection, Berlin International Film Festival 2014
« Un objet hybride atypique et attachant. » - Olivier Nuc, LE FIGARO
« Mélancolie, aventure, humour et B.O. dionysienne s'associent ici avec grâce dans un univers gothico-romantique qui émerveillera enfants et parents. » - Marilyne Letertre, METRO
On the coldest night of the year, a solitary woman, heavy with child, wanders the desolate, snowbound wilds. On the edge of perishing, she is brought into the hilltop home of the remarkable and mysterious Madame Madeleine, who midwifes the birth of little Jack. He’s a regular infant but for the fact that his heart is a solid chunk of ice. That won’t do. The magically inclined Madame Madeleine handily replaces it with a delicate miniature cuckoo clock. Adopted into the lady’s unusual household, Jack learns the three rules of maintaining his clockwork heart: wind it every day, no strong emotions and don’t ever, ever fall in love.
Despite his housemistress’s efforts, however, that third rule is all but made to be broken. It’s the pretty urchin Miss Acacia, a street musician with a hurdy-gurdy and a golden voice, who tangles up the gears inside Jack when he comes across her in town one day. His desire is thwarted, though, when Acacia vanishes, and so begins his search for her, one that will lead him on a long and very, very eventful journey…
A graciously Gallic surrealist fairy-tale musical with a dash of Gothic macabre and a streak of steampunk tech, JACK ET LA MÉCANIQUE DU COEUR is a CG-animated cabinet of curiosities that kids and grown-ups alike can rummage through with delight. It’s based on co-director Mathias Malzieu’s book and song cycle of the same name, performed with the band he fronts, Dionysos. The book’s lush illustrations, by Nicoletta Ceccoli, come to luminous life within a fantastical fin-de-siècle landscape, while Malzieu’s music — a magnificent blend of cabaret on contemporary indie rock, garnished with chamber-pop flourishes — guiding and enriching the film in a rare and rewarding manner. In the spirit of Tim Burton, Neil Gaiman and Terry Gilliam, JACK ET LA MÉCANIQUE DU COEUR faithfully fulfills the wish list of any darkly romantic daydreamer.
— Rupert Bottenberg