Ne Me Quitte PasSabine Lubbe Bakker, Niels van Koevorden - 107'
Ne Me Quitte Pas is a tragicomic ode to failure. Set in a village on the edge of Belgium, Bob (Flemish) and Marcel (Walloon) share their solitude, sense of humor and craving for alcohol. They have agreed that suicide is the best way out if worse comes to worst. In that case, they have chosen the perfect spot to do so: under Bob's tree of life. Bob is a retired cowboy who loves his freedom and the forest, while Marcel is trying to hold on to the family he is about to lose. Time passes slowly in the Wallonian countryside. Fortunately, there's wood to be chopped, sticky flypaper to be hung and there are the occasional trips to the dentist. The remaining time is killed with drinking. In direct cinema style we witness a Walloon carnival, a car accident and a failed attempt to find Bob\'s son. Even Bob's tree of life appears to have vanished. Despite all, the two men never indulge in self-pity. They stand strong together, until Marcel decides to stop drinking and Bob refuses to join him in rehab. Ne Me Quitte Pas is a Belgian drama about life on the brink of society in all its beauty, modesty and irony. The authenticity of the main characters is painful and confronting, yet entertaining and utterly charming. It is a story about mortality in a place where time seems to stand still.