Friday, 17 May 2013

France beats the gloom with recession movie jokes

News of recession may overshadow the first anniversary of French President Francois Hollande's swearing-in but it has launched a thousand jokes.
In a country that loves its puns, people have been making light of the situation by playing on names of films.
As the news sank in, Recession Movie was the top topic on French Twitter.
Casino Royale became Casino Social, suggesting men of action like James Bond might be out of work and claiming benefit in times like these.
The Hollywood film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl became Pirates of the Caribbean: The Mystery of the Cursed Bank - an apparent reference to the government's recent tax evasion scandal 
With no dash for economic growth in sight, the science-fiction classic Blade Runner was recast for the French as Blade Trotter.
A random sample of French Recession Movie tweets, 15 May
And on the day The Great Gatsby was bringing glitter to France by opening the Cannes film festival, the much-anticipated movie with its account of opulence and decadence was reduced to The So-so Gatsby.
Sad Amelie Asked by the BBC for her pick of the gags, one French cultural journalist, Liliane Langellier, went back to Gatsby for Gaspi le magnifique. Tweeted by Bruno Bichet, the French pun roughly translates as The Great Wastrel.
Famous French films with less translatable names got the satirical treatment too, naturally.
Joining in the national merriment, one blogger tweeted the 1960s New Wave classic A bout de souffle (Breathless) as A bout de sous (Penniless).
A more recent French favourite, Le fabuleux destin d'Amelie Poulain (The Fabulous Destiny of Amelie Poulain - or Amelie, as it was known on its international release) was recast by one tweeter as Le misereux train-train quotidien d'Amelie Poulain (The Miserable Everyday Daily Routine of Amelie Poulain).
The jokes appear to reflect people's weariness with bad economic news, bloggers told the BBC.
At a casual glance, few of the digs seem aimed specifically at President Hollande, with his unenviable reputation for dithering, yet the occasional barb does shine through.
One blogger, evidently a Star Wars fan, paid tribute to The Empire Strikes Back with, The Empire Is Considering A Diplomatic Answer.