life is pink like carnival!

Inside the neo-fairground collective Nantes Toto Black, Julia plays the character of Candy Love. In her pink caravan set between the two “La fête à Toto” attractions, Candy chats into a microphone with a male voice doctor and runs a beauty salon for entertainment. Between the two films, Julia, approaching her thirties, wonders about her future.

How long is youth? Is maturity well mixed with indifference? Being gentrified, where does it start? These questions crossed Julia, alias Candy Love, and became the framework of the beautiful documentary Gabrielle Culand dedicated to her.

In Candy’s land, like Julia’s real life, “to get out of hard times, having friends is very rewarding” as the song credits the eponymous cartoon from the 80s comments in a wisely. Julia/Candy has better than friends: a tribe.

Toto Black (holding “Tout au Black”) was formed in 2012. Composed of street and circus artists, outstanding builders and DIY builders, humor including self-mockery, the company took on the universe to the fairground by happily transferring its codes, and by operating back to sources, when fairground people build their own cars.

“Fête à Toto”, a crazy fair with an eighties aesthetic, combines a dozen fairground attractions and booths with floral names: let’s talk La Mailloche, “a game of energy for of the baltringues ”also known as“ La Machine à Orgueil ”; Kayass, slingshot shooting at various targets (pell-mell: Derrick, love, drugs, Johnny Halliday); and of course, Candy Love, the caravan has a DJ set and a beauty salon presented as follows on the company’s website:

Are you ugly and lonely? Welcome, you are in the right place! Candy, the bimbo style really welcomes you and listens to you. Princess of rimel, goddess of the star system, express makeover, manicure, glitter, bleach, tattoo, footbath and vacation in Hawaii. Relax, let yourself go, tell your life story while being fed. “

video length: 21sec

Candy Love at Toto’s party

© Raise the Sound of Movies

For the Totos, life is a party, and vice versa. With the ease of an environment she knows so well, director Gabrielle Culand captures the troupe’s daily life in a few shots: collaborating, the road, the trucks loaded and discharged, the marquee, the short nights and the hard mornings. Dismountable, transportable, nomadic existence. Lots of laughter, the music and the fairy lights and the delighted audience. And then Covid putting a brutal brake on everything.

To recover from the release of successive incarcerations, Toto Blacks organized a seminar, with the same tools used by HR consultants to weld a management committee: Gabrielle Culand filmed them, parked in front of the flipchart explaining their projects, the obstacles. to arise, solutions to avoid it. Group work methods borrowed from the business world, serve a project with completely opposite costs: no matter, it’s the collective dynamic that needs to be revived and you need to survive from your work.

Julia, also an artist and graphic designer under the pseudonym Juyalouisa, is surprised: the activity has progressed very slowly since the pandemic. And then he broke up with the father of his son Marius, also a member of Toto. Artist, heart taking, mother: Julia enters her thirties with fear of loneliness and under the threat of continued danger. Among the attractions of Fête à Toto, the Candy Love parlor generated a small income. But moving away from the collective protector was not arbitrarily decided: for him like his friend Mathilde alias Mathi Matos, the Totos were a surrogate family.

In an order that is very nostalgic and full of tenderness, Gabrielle Culand keeps the faces of Julia and the Toto Blacks watching together, amused and gentle, videos of their youth and their beginnings. , before the arrival of the children. The archive power of looks, laughter and sadness that gathers on sofas: ten years ago. We used to be 20, now we’re 30 and we’re thinking about what we want to be, what we can be.

The scene marks a tipping point in the film, which sees Candy slowly disappearing and Julia expressing herself, by engaging herself in new projects outside of Totos. This includes offloading, during the move, entire boxes of trinket that are forced to be found at flea markets and that contain many of Candy Love’s caravan decorations. And as ridiculous as it may seem, it was to welcome the arrival of a stray dog ​​found in the Toulouse region, Mickaël was immediately adopted and baptized. Finally a family? Sure.

Several times in “Candy Love and Toto Black”, Julia commented on her drawings under the eye of Gabrielle Culand’s camera: another way to tell her story, and to showcase herself. The last canvas, which he had finished painting before our eyes, showed him, the backpack on his shoulder, holding Marius ’hand, his little dog Mickaël at his feet. In the back, two little hedgehogs with clown hats “because everyone is the same, the party is about our lives, we will never forget ”. But a page came back, a place of quieter life, more predictable as well. “Well, I’m an adult released Julia in a pout half-relieved, half-resigned. After a period of reflection, he released the last word in the form of a diagnosis: what had happened to him was old age.

The observation made, the party can go on and it is under the colorful garlands of the Fête à Toto ball that the documentary ends. Candy, Toto Black and the public dance to the rhythm of France Gall’s “Résiste” on a regressive ride, the night is beautiful, life too. Aging, really?

Candy Love & Toto Black, a documentary by Gabrielle Culand produced by Elever la Voix Films with the participation of France 3 Pays de la Loire and France Télévisions.

Regional broadcast Thursday June 9 at 11.00 pm – Rebroadcast Wednesday June 22 and Friday June 30 at 9.45 am – National broadcast of documentary box l’Heure D in France 3 during the summer.

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