DVD Review: Welcome Aboard
When life gets you down and you just want to run away from everything, what do you do? In French drama Welcome Aboard, depressed sixty-something painter Taillandier has stopped painting, stopped taking his heart medication, and stopped enjoying life. One morning after his wife has gone out, he decides to hop in his car and run away from life. Revisiting his childhood home in the rain, he gets his newly acquired shotgun out of the boot and attempts to make this the shortest French film in history, but just can’t pull the trigger.
Driving through the rain soaked night, he pulls up to a red light driving through the next town, and a teenage runaway hops in to escape the rain.
Marylou is just as much a lost and troubled soul as Taillandier is, but together something wonderful might just happen. Of course, having a fifteen year old girl in his car as his contemplates what to do with his life isn’t the best thing, so attempts the drop Marylou off at her mothers place the following morning, only to witness that Marylou was telling the truth when she said her mother had kicked her out and her step father hated her.
Eventually settling down in a quite beach cottage while they both figure out what’s going on in their lives, a caring, loving father daughter type relationship begins, and alongside this comes healing and re-igniting a passion for life.
A sedate drama that offers a few twists, but is mostly the film equivalent of enjoying a bottle of nice French wine, Welcome Aboard shows us that if we are open and honest with people, we can truly learn to live.
Jeanne Lambert plays a feisty teenage Marylou that both annoys (as any fifteen year old girl should) and brings a fresh lightness to the other wise dark film. Patrick Chesnais as Taillandier is the rock that the story anchors itself to, and whilst it is a light drama, Welcome Aboard touches on some very dark but topical subjects.
Rating: M Violence.