|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Original title:||Il a déjà tes yeux|
|Production country:||Frankreich 2016|
|Running time:||Approx. 95 min|
|Rated:||From 0 years|
Paul (Lucien Jean-Baptiste) and Sali (Aïssa Maïga) are a happy couple. They are madly in love with each other and have fulfilled a dream by opening a small flower shop in Paris. But there is one thing they are still missing for their great happiness: a child. But since they can't have children, they applied for adoption years ago. And this application is finally successful. Paul and Sali are allowed to adopt little Benjamin. The boy is very sweet and easy to care for - and white! This is no problem for Paul and Sali, but it is for Sali's parents, who are very rooted in their Senegalese traditions. And Madame Mallet (Zabou Breitman) from the family reunification office also sees it as problematic that a white child is growing up with black parents. She doesn't miss an opportunity to keep an eye on the two of them to catch them in a drastic educational error. But Paul and Sali are not about to let their new found family happiness be destroyed that easily.
With To Mix It Up, director and lead actor Lucien Jean-Baptiste humorously tackles some actually not-so-funny topics like racism, prejudice, and officialdom. The pleasant thing about his approach is that he is able to add a few new facets to all these topics. There are, of course, the usual prejudices that Paul and Sali face because of the color of their skin. For example, Sali is automatically mistaken for Benjamin's nanny on the playground. But nobody wants to believe that she is his mother. On the other hand, there are her parents, who break with Sali when she brings home a white child. They meet the mixed-race family with just as many prejudices and dislikes, which doesn't make the situation any easier for the couple.
It is to Jean-Baptiste's credit that he tries to address all facets of prejudice in our society. But unfortunately, he does not have such a sensitive hand in all areas of his production. Some of the jokes are shockingly flat, and in some scenes the whole thing becomes far too hysterical and silly. For example, when Sali's single girlfriend agrees to change Benjamin's diaper and is so over-the-top silly about it, and then - gag moth box says hello - gets peed on by the baby, it's not funny, it's just embarrassing. The same goes for the finale, in that any potential for fun and emotion is wasted for laugh-out-loud gags and frantic cornball.
Happily, there are also plenty of scenes that are funny, touching and just beautifully directed. Thus, the successful aspects and the weaknesses largely balance each other out. In the end, the overall impression is quite satisfying, even if it's obvious that much more could have been made out of the nice initial idea. Despite a few disappointments there is here a very clear: Worth seeing!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp