Man Caves | Garconnieres (2022) Visions du Reel 2022

April 10th, 2022
Author: Meredith Taylor

Dir: Céline Pernet | Doc, Switzerland

Men share their innermost thoughts in this provocative sortie into the male psyche from first time Swiss filmmaker Céline Pernet.

After three years and over four hundred meetings with Swiss men dating apps and newspapers social anthropologist Céline Pernet, in her thirties, uncovers what it means to be a young man in Switzerland today. The subject of toxic masculinity is a hot potato in newsrooms and dinner parties all over the world, but less is talked about the more positive aspects of male behaviour. How do men see themselves in the 21st century?

Travelling the length and breadth of Switzerland in all weathers, and we watch her braving snowy motorways and summer pastures in her determination to probe the male of her generation and to unearth innermost desires and beliefs. Predictably she finds that men see themselves as strong and protective leaders of the pack who want to triumph in the workplace, avoid emotion and protect their womenfolk, while oggling porn on the quiet.

Under Pernet’s persuasive line of questioning the men – between 30 and 45 – are much more forthcoming than you would imagine. And credit to her. Coy and rather furtive initial encounters soon give way to candid and even tearful revelations as the male of the species reveals how women are viewed as seductive objects of desire to civilising influences in their lives, with sexual encounters leading to marital and paternal bonds and beyond. Interweaving the cumulative interview footage with her driving around in snow, fog and sunshine to undertake her research this is real real catnip for female viewers. And although Pernet brings nothing particularly groundbreaking to the party her clever way of coaxing out and editing her findings it what makes this quietly compelling. MT

VISIONS DE REAL 2022 | Swiss Competition


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