First it was a mine that exploded in the middle of the Moroccan desert. Years later, it was a stray bullet that lodged in his brain…. Bazil (Dany Boon) doesn’t have much luck with weapons. The first made him an orphan, the second holds him on the brink of sudden, instant death. Released from the hospital after his accident, Bazil is homeless. Luckily, our inspired and gentle-natured dreamer is quickly taken in by a motley crew of junkyard dealers living in a veritable Ali Baba’s cave. The group’s talents and aspirations are as surprising as they are diverse: Remington, Calculator, Buster, Slammer, Elastic Girl, Tiny Pete and Mama Chow. Then one day, walking by two huge buildings, Bazil recognizes the logos of the weapons manufacturers that caused all of his misfortune. He sets out to take revenge, with the help of his faithful gang of wacky friends. Underdogs battling heartless industrial giants, our gang relive the battle of David and Goliath, with all the imagination and fantasy of Buster Keaton. Directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet (Amélie, The City of Lost Children).
MICMACS – Filmmaker (director/co-writer) Jean-Pierre Jeunet on the sheer joy of directing After working for two years to no avail on the beautiful project Life of Pi for 20th Century Fox, I was so hungry to make a film that I decided to write another original script with my partner since Amélie, Guillaume Laurant.
I wanted to write a story about revenge (to put to rest once and for all Once Upon a Time in the West, by Sergio Leone, THE movie that changed my life). I imagined a band of cranks directly inspired by the toys in Toy Story, seven of them, just like the seven dwarves of Snow White. I also wanted to talk about a much more serious subject, which is human beings whose profession it is to make and sell weapons.
In short, I wanted to make a sort of mix between live cartoon and slapstick, but which also dealt with something entirely serious.
I comforted myself by thinking that after all, The Great Dictator was a comedy, which launched a series of surveys and interviews with real weapons manufacturers, because even if it’s good to laugh it’s better know what the subject matter is.
For the sheer joy of directing, I indulged myself with Micmacs. I put everything in the film that I love, everything that makes up my own bric à brac, almost as like completing a circle: the poster of the film within a film (a nod to Delicatessen), Amélie type jokes, references to the movies of my youth, the cartoons of Tex Avery, the “Mission Impossible” TV series, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton.
I wanted it to look beautiful, to give it the same attention to detail, to have an idea in each scene, which is something Disney and Pixar do so well in their films. As Kurosawa used to say, “Any random frame from a movie must be as beautiful as a painting.”
To quote Alfred Hitchcock: “Some make slices of life, I make slices of cake.” So, bon appétit!