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Peaceful(De son vivant)

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France, Belgium · 2021
2h 0m
Director Emmanuelle Bercot
Starring Catherine Deneuve, Benoît Magimel, Cécile de France, Gabriel Sara
Genre Drama

A son in denial of his terminal cancer diagnosis, a mother facing unbearable loss, and a doctor fighting to bring them to acceptance – in this poignant melodrama, these three people have one year to come together and understand what it means to die while living.

Stream Peaceful

What are people saying?

What are critics saying?


The New York Times by Beatrice Loayza

The film frequently dips into unintentional absurdity, yes, but it also captivates, thanks to the powers of the Gallic film-world heavyweights Benoît Magimel (playing Benjamin) and Catherine Deneuve.


IndieWire by David Ehrlich

The director’s palliative need for drama often snuffs out the very truths that Peaceful vows to restore to the process of dying. Where is the tedium of sickness? The discomfort of suffering? The banality of waiting for it to be over?


TheWrap by Fran Hoepfner

That Peaceful occasionally takes us out of the patients’ world and into the emotional strain put onto the nurses and other doctors is a deft way of showing how cancer affects all.


Variety by Guy Lodge

The film is too emotionally blunt not to wring tears (or at least a solid lump in the throat) where required, though they don’t always feel artfully earned. Either way, at over two hours, it’s a long trudge toward an inevitable end.

50 by Marya E. Gates

While the filmmakers certainly have their heart in the right place, aside from maybe a plea for more compassionate medical professionals, nothing about Peaceful is very original or even entertaining.


Screen Daily by Wendy Ide

Unfolding over the course of a year, and divided into seasons, the film digs deep into the psychology of dying but is curiously unmoving, despite milking every last cancer-afflicted frame for sentiment.

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