SIMÉON

FEATURE FILM

' One of the Sunniest and Most Charming Ghost Stories Ever Told '

Los Angeles Times

SYNOPSIS

​—

 

 

 

He talked about a music which would attain this universal vibration toward which

the hummingbirds glide and the flowers are blown.

—  Quote in Siméon  —

 

In a small West Indian village, Siméon, a music teacher and Isidore, his 

star disciple, a mechanic by necessity and guitarist by passion, shared the same 

ambition, an impossible dream — to put their island on the world’s music map with 

Zouk music. Orélie, Isidore’s ten-year-old daughter helps him in his endeavors, 

by bringing Simeon back to life, after the drunken rum lover fell from his 

tree house trying to get close to the full moon.

 

 

VIEW THE TRAILER

1/10

CREDITS

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Directed by: Euzhan Palcy

Screenplay by: Euzhan Palcy & Jean-Pierre Rumeau

Dialogues by: Euzhan PalcyJean-Pierre Rumeau

From an original story of: Euzhan Palcy

Songs written & interpreted by: Kassav

Music composed by: Bruno Coulais

Mixed by: Didier Lozahic

Cinematographer: Philippe Welt

Sound Engineer: Bernard Bats

Sound Mixing by: William Flageollet

Edited by: Marie-Josephe Yoyotte

Art Director: Bernard Vezat

Costume Designer: Annie Quesnel

Sound Editing: Gina Pignier

Special Effects Supervisor: Christian Guillon / Ex-Machina

Executive Producer: Jean-Lou Monthieux

Production manager: Jean De Tregomain

A Co-Production: Saligna Production / France 2 Cinéma

Running time: 115 minutes

Country: France (Martinique)

Language: French with English subtitles
Format: 4K DCP

CAST

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Jean-Claude Duverger  —  Siméon

Jacob Desvarieux (Kassav)  —  Isidore

Jocelyne Béroard (Kassav)  —  Roselyne

Little Lucinda Messager  —  Orélie

Albert Lirvat  —  Albert

Jean-Michel Martial  —  Max

Gerty Dambury  —  Lucia

Jean-Claude Naimro (Kassav)  —  Charlie

 

With Pascal Legitimus  —  Philomène Jr

With the voice of Lisette Malidor  —  The Lady of Fire

TRAILER

 

SIMÉON

 

CRITICS

‘Euzhan Palcy’s SIMEON: Beyond Beautiful!’
@BilgeEbiri editor, critic Vulture/New York Magazine

 

'One of the sunniest and most charming ghost stories ever told'

Los Angeles Times

‘A guide to the most scenic films shot in the Caribbean’

Vogue.com
(July 2, 2020)

'Her Caribbean musical-comedy fairytale by the closing credits

literally sparked dancing in the aisles of the theater.'

Ron Magglozzi Curator, Department of Film, MoMA 

'Spirited humor in a ghost story'

Philadelphia Inquirer

 

'One of the most vibrant and vital film you'll ever see'

Linda Lopez McAlister "The Women's Show"

WMNF - FM, 88.5 Tampa, Fl.

 

'Your new family film with its many musical interludes

is bubbling over with imagination and optimism'

The Kinder- und Jugendfilm Korrespondenz (Munich- Germany)

 

NUEVO CINE LATINOAMERICANO 

Martinica y su directora Euzhan Palcy regresaron con Simeón,

una fábula multicolor que explora algunos fantasmas

de las Antillas Francesas. 

El Tiempo (Colombia) 

 

TESTIMONIES

'We loved it very much. It’s imagination, which is not altered by any

of the trifles which are attributed to childhood, the powerful joy

which springs up in the midst of the tragic, the work on sounds and colours,

the language... it is a serious and mocking enchantment at the same time

that it seems to us very important to share with the public.'

Lili Hinstin,  Artistic director, Locarno Film Festival (2020)

'I would like to reiterate again how much I loved seeing Simeon.
I’d be really grateful if you could pass on to her how much we love the film,
and would be thrilled to show it.'

Alex Davidson Cinema Curator, Barbican, London.

 

 'Euzhan, it appears that Siméon lit the fuse at the Cinematheque'

Costa Gavras / Chairman of Cinematheque Francaise

 

'It was the first time that I danced with my pupils'

Teacher at Jules Ferry high school in Anzin, France

 

AWARDS & HONORS

 

 

2019  —  "Among Others: Blackness at MoMA": The Masterpieces
                   of New York's MoMA’s Black Art Collection of the last 90 years

                                             Nine feature films. One musical: Simeon
 

2013  —  Cannes Film Festival official selection - Cinema de la Plage

1993  —  Fespaco Thomas Sankara Institute for Black People Award

1993  —  Brussels International Fantasy Film Festival / Silver Raven Award

      Competing with Sam Raimi's Army of the Darkness and Joe Dante's Matinee

1993  —  Philadelphia Festival of World Cinema / Public Award

1993  —  Montreal Film Festival, Vue d'Afrique / Ban Zil Kreyol Award

1993  —  Milan Film Festival Youth Award

PLOT

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The ghost of a music teacher pushes a young mechanic to start a career in music.

Siméon is Euzhan Palcy’s third feature film.  It marks her return to France after her 

American experience with the film A Dry White Season. She wanted Season 

to be "Cinema Verité" — that is to reflect the truth — at all costs.

 

And the lengths she had to go through to make that a reality took a heavy toll on her, both mentally and physically.  But on the flight bringing her to visit Francis Ford Coppola on the set of The Godfather 3 by his invitation, a spark of light begins to shine.

 

A tune, an image, a color pop into her mind and Euzhan embarks on the writing of 

Siméon as if tomorrow was her last day.  She pulls on everything she’s learned, 

every single thing that made her the artist she became.

 

Siméon becomes a lively movie, a real extravaganza of color and music, an 

antidote to gloom, a tribute to all that the Caribbean can create for our delight. 

Siméon, the spirit of music marks the return of Euzhan Palcy to her roots, nine years
after her seminal movie, the classic Sugar Cane Alley.