While he was to receive the Legion of Honor, Christophe Maquet, a brilliant lawyer, learned that his father, suffering from a serious illness, had planned his death on the day of the ceremony. A poignant film on the end of life that resonates with the experience of the actor.
In the telefilm The Last Part, broadcast this evening at 9:05 p.m. on TF1, Franck Dubosc plays Christophe, lawyer at the pinnacle of his career whose plans will be turned upside down by the decision of his father, suffering from a degenerative disease, to plan his departure . Son of a worker eager for recognition, he will try to get closer to this modest father who never understood his ambition and from whom he moved away.
The idea for the film was born from the personal initiative of the actor after the death of his father: the desire to “empty your bag after having experienced something strong“, and also of a collaboration with his friend and film producer Cyril Colbeau-Justin (deceased in 2020). With his brother Ludovic in the direction, they make him meet the screenwriter Jean-André Yerles, who helps him to write down their experiences.
“I let myself go to tell the end of my father’s life and our relationship, with details I had forgotten“, says the actor.”I wanted this story to exist, but above all I didn’t want to write it myself, I couldn’t do it because it’s too close to me.“
Another autobiographical aspect that he shares with the hero of the film: the shame of his father’s modest background, and their lack of mutual recognition. By addressing the delicate subject of euthanasia, still illegal in France, through his own experience, the actor also evokes a difficult filming, since his mother died while he was shooting this fiction inspired by the end of his father’s life. . “I lost my mother at the same time we were shooting the film, as a sign.“
It was also a way for him to desecrate death, because that is how his mother approached him. “When I heard about my dad’s decision, I was on the Olympia stage, had just performed, and brought my mom up on stage after the show. And instead of looking around the room, she said “Daddy is going to die on Tuesday. Are you okay?” How to answer this question, with a father to whom I never said “I love you” and of whom I did not have enough time left to tell him?“
Seeing himself increasingly diminished while suffering from Charcot’s disease, his father had recourse to euthanasia in 2002, he recalls. “I went to say goodbye to him, and told him about the last trade we had both had at a game of Scrabble, and where I had wondered if I should let him win. I had decided not, and he had won anyway.“
A last part recounted in the film, inspiring him to its title. “The hardest part was the last goodbye on the balcony the next day when leaving the hospital“, he recalls. A memory he insisted on engraving in the film by illustrating the hero’s farewell to his father in the same way.