The Dunkirk Carnival invites itself to the small screen, after the cancellation of the 2022 edition

“Why do we have so much fun during carnival and why don’t we do it all year round? Pierre is a photographer. Facing the camera, he delivers his vision of the Dunkirk carnival in this polyphonic and colorful documentary by Yannick Delva and Datis Balaï, called We live up there, in reference to a carnival song.

With the cancellation of the event, for the second consecutive year, it is with a touch of nostalgia that this 52-minute film is broadcast, Thursday evening, in the second part of the evening on France 3 Hauts-de-France. “We filmed in 2020 during the Trois Joyeuses, which is the high point of the carnival, a week before the sudden interruption of the festivities”, says Yannick Delva, himself from Dunkirk and steeped in this very special culture. and sometimes absurdHis documentary immerses us, as brilliantly as noisily, in this warm and sometimes absurd atmosphere, where picturesque characters follow one another, according to the meetings. Because even in retirement homes, the carnival imposes its joy of living and its benevolence.

It sings, it dances, it heckles. “The city is too happy, ironically a painted participant. We come from Paris and we are looking for a bar where we are bored. We would like to hang out to recharge our batteries. “Because it is indeed happiness, mixed with a touch of melancholy, which oozes from the images.

Here we are invited to a “chapel”, a house where we drink and eat, according to the Dunkirk tradition. The hostess, Marie-Anne, recounts the organization of sleeping arrangements for all her guests: “It all depends on what state you are in. Going up the stairs… We lost some on the landing.” Tasty anecdotes Then we find ourselves at the heart of the band, this parade which crosses the city to the sound of an orchestra and its drum major, a sort of traveling conductor . Whether it’s raining, windy, snowing, the colors burst. Some philosophize on a bench. It’s funny, touching, sometimes full of tasty anecdotes. Extract from the documentary “We live up there”, broadcast on France 3 Hauts-de-France. – Studio ManivelleWe discover incognito the mayor of Dunkirk, disguised like everyone else. Because the dress code, during the holidays, is that men dress as women. Why ?

A carnivalist simply explains it in the course of a discussion, by revealing his tattoo of Jean Bart on the heart. Because Jean Bart was the corsair protector of the city under Louis XIV, who has become an icon today. “We hope that the film is good for carnivalgoers””The documentary was, of course, prepared to be able to pass from one carnivalgoer to another, but it also leaves a lot of room for chance, as in this sequence where this person recounts the origin of disguises at the carnival”, explains Yannick Delva. Thus, sequence after sequence, humor and emotion pass the buck brilliantly to pay homage to this unique event. “We hope that the film is good for carnival-goers in this difficult period, underlines the co-director. But that, after the ban that fell recently, it does not encourage them to do so unofficially this year. »

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