Petit Samedi

Paloma Sermon-Daï: Director’s Statement

Petit Samediis born of the desire to transform a dark story into something luminous. It’s the story of a mother who didn’t abandon her son when he got caught up in drugs, and of a son that kept his head above water for years, if only so as not to disappoint her. Twenty years later, we meet them in this film and between laughter and tears, love comes out victorious. With this project, I wanted to go straight to the core and modestly sketch a relationship, a bond so singular that it is difficult to understand.

This thin-skinned duo consists of my mother and my brother, Ysma and Damien. Damien is seeking healing. The film follows the beginning of his therapy, between confessions to his psychologist and discussions with his mother around the kitchen table. Bit by bit introspection leads Damien into his past. He listens to the voice of the little boy he once was and faces the man he is today.

Over the course of the film, Damien and Ysma go from interdependence to liberation and take time to consider their relationship and their addictions and confronting us with our own limits. Damien shatters preconceived ideas and questions all the clichés generally associated with drug dependence.

In our little post-industrial Walloon village, populated with its strange characters, we decided together to confront the gazes and free our voice. It was also a way for me to claim my right to expression, no matter my social class or origins. This film, so vital for me, is the unconscious necessity that drove me to study film. The film that had to be done before doing anything else, gift for myself and for my family.

At this point, when I think of Petit Samedi, I hear only my mother’s words, that I cling to like a precious gift: « It’s a secret that we needed to tell, to scream, we are soothed » What I’m left with now is the joy of seeing Damien move forward. It’s the most important.

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