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International Programme 2014
Harvest Paul Lacoste

Every year, a colourful bunch of utterly diverse characters meet to pick grapes near Toulouse. An unusual look at a precarious job between poverty and self-determination.


Documentary Film
82 minutes

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Didier Creste
Paul Lacoste
Yvan Quehec
Anthony Brining
The scene: a small wine-growing region to the east of Toulouse. The time: mid-September. The cast: a company of about 15 women and men – “short service volunteers” for the few weeks of the wine harvest, armed with shears and buckets. The group has fanned out among the vines of a medium-sized grower in the Gaillac region. The statistics list them as harvest hands; the sociological term for them is “precariously employed”. The protagonists themselves, however, would qualify this imputation. Accepting it would mean handing over a big part of their pride. This attitude may be called unrealistic, but that’s precisely what director Paul Lacoste seems to be interested in: what people do and what they literally embody because of it rather than the opinions they express. The film still demonstrates almost casually how massively the insecurity of such an existence is inscribed into the protagonists’ behaviour. They all feel constrained by the unvoiced pressures of their situation. They may have more or less talent in suppressing such emotional and mental insights – but their objective effects can hardly be denied.

Ralph Eue

Healthy Workplaces Film Award 2014