Sometimes life plays bad tricks. Director of family planning for the Goutte-d’Or district in Paris, Élisabeth Perrier, known as Nona, spends her time explaining contraception to young people and finds herself pregnant at the age of 70! Even more incredible, according to a DNA analysis, her only lover, André (Michel Vuillermoz), would not be the father of the child. Nona, who has raised triplets now in her forties alone, and who cherishes a hard-won independence, feels dispossessed of her body, which has become an object of curiosity, and of her apartment, gradually invaded by a midwife and her daughters. who watch over her like milk on fire.
“All this from the first episode, it’s very inflated and yet, the more improbable, the more you believe”, rejoices Miou-Miou, who seized with a certain jubilation of this nonconformist character. Loving and uncompromising at the same time, Nona maintains a complex relationship with her daughters, entangled in their personal problems: Emmanuelle (Virginie Ledoyen) suffocates in her straitjacket of a bourgeois housewife; Gabrielle (Clotilde Hesme), sex therapist, writes bestsellers on the couple but remains unable to commit; George (Valérie Donzelli), still a virgin at 44, prolongs his studies indefinitely so as not to face life and leave the cocoon of the maternal apartment.
Like the decor that is both old-fashioned and timeless, cluttered with a whole bunch of knick-knacks and souvenirs, the series exudes a vintage charm. Co-creator with the young screenwriter Clémence Madeleine-Perdrillat (Aries (s), season 2 of In therapy), Valérie Donzelli drew on her own childhood, within a large family, and her love for 1980s sitcoms, such as Doting father Where Sam and Sally, to nourish the episodes, nine in number like the months of a pregnancy.
In close collaboration with cinematographer Irina Lubtchansky, the filmmaker has shaped a warm atmosphere, bathed in honeyed lights: «I want you to smell the wallpaper, the fluffy blankets and the coffee in the morning», she explains. Its very staging “Sensory” does not hesitate to resort to “dated” techniques: zooms, close-ups, super 8 images …
In this offbeat series, which flirts with the fantastic and the musical, Valérie Donzelli films the outbursts of the heart and the carnal desire of a 70-year-old woman, so rare on the screen, and presents motherhood in all its ambivalence, at a time “Super-power and super-poison”. Despite a few drops in pace and a wacky oddity that can be confusing, one can only be touched by the complicity released by this united tribe, drawing from nostalgia for childhood the strength to grow.