Between the men and the baby/Entre les hommes et le bébé



Bonjour à tous,

Je crois que dans la version française, la relation avec le bébé est plus individuelle :on voit chaque homme passer du temps avec Marie et faire des activités différentes avec elle. On voit les liens se construire au fur et à mesure.Les hommes se divisent le temps, ils demandent conseil à une pharmacienne, lisent des livres sur les bébés; bref ils s'organisent à long terme. Ceci est peut être dû au fait que dans la version française le bébé reste six mois chez eux alors que dans la version américaine, le séjour est plus court. Par contre ce qui est bizarre est qu'ils préfèrent laisser le bébé seul plutôt que de le confier à la gardienne (en France elles sont parfois très envahissantes !). Do fathers really help taking care of babies in the US or is it an exclusively female task ?


Recently, since women starting taking on jobs alongside men, the trend has been for fathers to care for their babies (almost( as much as the mothers. However, it is still very true that the primary responsibilites fall on the mother. Even with today's "political correctness", I think Americans are prone to saying "The house and the baby are the woman's job- the men go out and earn the money". Anything else is seen as a *deviation from the norm*. Also, in the case where parents separate or divorce, the child is most likely to remain with the mother. I think this is a clear indication of American society believing that the upbringing of a child is best left in the care of the mother. In such cases, fathers "care" for their children through short-term visits and monetary aid. Of course, the opposite situation is also true at times.


Je pense qu'un autre détail intéressant, qui vient s'ajouter aux propos de Claire, concerne le baby sitting. A deux reprises, dans la version française, il y est fait allusion, alors que ce n'est pas le cas dans la version américaine. Why do you think it has been omitted ?


Regarding the issue of baby-sitting, Stephanie asked why we thought it wasn't included in the American version. Perhaps becuase the controversy of "modern scientific medicine" and "natural medicine" is not as great of an issue here in the USA (I'd say especially in the 1980's when the film was produced(... perhaps becuase it would have detracted too much from the suspenseful plot to explain why the babysitter refused to watch Marie (since none of the American men were as confrontational as Pierre( I think the difference here, as expressed in another forum about the storyline, has to do with differing values between the 2 movie cultues, in that the French strive to create something that induces thought, while the Americans (on the most part( strive to contrive something that is entertaining first before being meaningful.



Comme la soulevé Claire, la nature de la relation entre les hommes et le bébé est différente dans les deux versions. Il me semble que cela vient du fait que le réalisateur français a attaché plus d'importance aux relations personnelles entre chaque adulte et l'enfant. L'affection qu'ils témoignent alors à l'enfant s'estompe lorsqu'ils sont tous les trois réunis, comme dans la version américaine. Does the fact that men should not show their feelings in public (even in a small group of persons) is a heritage of your culture too? In France, I believe the present trend is to change this.



I noticed a very interesting difference in one scence between the two versions. In one scene in the French version, one of the roomates slowly enters the room where the other rommate is playing with Marie. I could sense by his suspicious approach towards the other roomate and the baby that he was thinking that the baby may be getting sexually molested. In the American version though, it's not even a question since he takes a shower with the baby, but in a very innocent way where there is no sense of wrongdoing on his part.

Obviously this reflects our strong distaste of matters involving pedophilia in this country. In terms of criminality, I think that pedophilia is regarded as the most serious crime in our country (probably even more than murder), and presenting it as even a remote possibity in this type of movie would have been in extremely bad taste. What do you think about my analysis? Am I completely out in left field (Am I very wrong) ????



Merci Amanda, on commençait à desepérer devant les interprétations saugrenues de Allen! Comment pouvez-vous voir un caractère sexuel dans la scène où un des trois hommes fait des papouilles au bébé? Jamais aucun français ne pensera à cela en voyant cette scène, c'est juste de l'amour PATERNEL.Et si l'autre homme parait gêné c'est uniquement parce qu'il l'a vu en flagrant délit de gagatisme!C'est l'image du macho impassible qui est détruite ici! Pourquoi cela vous choque-t-il plus que prendre une douche avec le bébé, c'est du pareil au même. Par pitié ne voyez pas des agressions sexuelles à tout bout de champ!


As Allen brought up, the American version steers clear of any sexual taboos. Jack takes a shower with Marie, but the scene is nothing more then "cute." Scenes from the French version lead me to believe that the French are more comfortable with alluding to what is considered sexually deviant. There is the scene where Michel lavishes Marie with kisses and the awkwardness when Pierre walks in, as Allen mentioned. When Pierre gets questioned by the police (after the dealers escape by motorcycle), the police infers that they're gay. Granted, this is a minor detail, but it wasn't included in the American version. Another detail is the difference, during the first diapering scene, in what is shown when the baby pees. In the French version, you see the pee squirting out from her vagina whereas, in the American version, it's a profile shot. Another example of differing standards of decency (and child pornography taboo).

What do you think? Other examples?


wow i totally missed that!! i must be very naive or you guys are seeing way too much into the scenes.. I honestly thought that the reason Jacques walks in so quietly is because he knows Michel would be embarrased that because he is being affectionate in a cute way with the baby (you know-"totally not macho") And i also thought that Jacques was just being polite (as a friend would be ) but also a bit jealous since he also cared a lot for Marie (as seen after the drugdealers mess up the apt. and he finds Marie in the closet and hugs her in relief)--and that is why he has than strange look on his face.. but who knows.. you might be onto something.. i just didn't think they would allude to such thing in that kind of film..


I completely


with you !! I was about to formulate the same comment.


Je suis désolé, je n'ai pas vu l'ombre d'un vagin dans tout le film. Je ne sais pas où tu vas chercher ça... Bien sûr, c'est une fille et elle est nue donc on peut sûrement voir son vagin. Mais ici, nous ne considérons pas les bébés comme des objets sexuels donc nous n'y avons même pas fait attention !


thought it was interesting that the relationship between the men and the mary was more explicit in the american version. they took her to work and played with her in the park. in the french version, they didn't really tell anyone except their friends at the party (even then they were hesitant).


In response to JB, yes, in America it is unusual for men to reveal their feelings in public. I think this was revealed in the scene where Jack walks in on Michael being affectionate with Marie; I also thought that Michael was embarassed because he had started to care for the baby and that he was no longer being "macho" about the situation. Women are considered the emotional ones in the relationship; men often try to hide their feelings so they can maintain their strong exterior.


I think the scene where jacques walks in on michel and the baby while he's kissing her could be seen either way. i think, however, that it meant for jacques to walk in quietly so as to not interrupt/embarrass michel. part of the humor in that situation is the realization that it *looks* pretty odd, even though it's really very innocent.

as for allen's comment, i think child pornography isn't exactly cherished by any culture... is it worse than murder, though? Difficult to say... would you say taking sexual advantage of a 6-year old (although not all pedophilia, by definition, involves sexual acts), and probably scarring them emotionally for life is worse than _ending_ someone's life? you try telling that to the relatives of the slain... " could have been worse- he could have been raped as a child, ma'am." heh...


In response to Claire's question, I think it depends on the guy. there are a lot of stories of non-existant fathers here in teh US. But some fathers do take a huge responsibility. My dad played a huge role in raising my sisters and I. My mom worked a lot, so he did most of the cooking and shopping. But this situation is not always true.

I also noticed that the guys did not ask a pharmacy for help, but Peter did ask that lady in the supermarket. I'm not sure if he did that because he didn't want to make it look like he had no idea what he was doing, or that people don't necessarily go to the pharmacy to ask general questions, more to ask questions about their medication....

What I found interesting, was that in the american version, Peter jack and micheal's friends did not leave them because they were taking care of a baby. In the French film, the guys tried to hide Marie from their friends, and when their friends did find out, they all left.


in answer to stephane's question, when sylvia comes back with marie, she does say that all her money is going towards baby-sitters and that she feels that she is not being a good mother because she doesn't spend enough time with her.


I think that baby-sitting being omitted from the American version is along the same lines as why Peter didn't really ask as many questions in the supermarket as Pierre did of the Pharmacist: These American "macho" men want to believe that they can do it all themselves. One could read into that as a sexist idea: "Hey, how tough could this be? A *woman* can do it!", or simply as three guys who just figure, "We can do this because we can do anything because we're macho men."

It's kind of the same way that guys that I know (myself included *blush*) almost always refuse to ask for directions when lost. "Hey, I'm a guy -- I can figure this out!" Is this kind of attitude taken in France as well? The idea of the "omnipotent macho man"?


Pour revenir sur l'épisode où Pierre rentre sur la pointe des pieds, alors que Michel joue avec Marie, je ne pense pas qu'il faille voir cela d'un point de vue sexuel. Il s'agit d'un simple jeu. Michel a peut-être un côté plus enfantin. Mais je ne pense pas que cela aille plus loin.


En réponse à Allen et Michelle (#4 et #5), je ne vois vraiment pas comment vous avez pu interpréter la scene de cette façon. Il est clair qu'il s'agit d'affection, d'intimité et pas de pulsions sexuelles! (c'est bien de la même comédie que nous parlons? celle qui est drôle et amusante...) Je suis complétement d'accord avec Amanda sur son analyse de la situation.


Salut à tous!

Alors là, j'avoue que les américains ont frappé très fort. Je suis plutôt d'accord avec mes camarades. Ce n'est pas parce qu'un mec embrasse un bébé qu'il aspire nécessairement à avoir des relations sexuelles avec. Il ne faut pas voir de la pédophilie partout non plus. On en vient à se demander si vos parents vous embrassent encore aux USA ou s'ils s'abstiennent de peur que leurs propres enfants ne les traînent devant les tribunaux pour pédophilie! Je pense comme Clara qu'ici l'homme est gêné car il est pris en flagrant délit de gagatisme comme elle dit. Il ne faut pas aller trop loin non plus. C'est une comédie et on est là pour se divertir.



Pour revenir sur le sujet de la pédophilie, je suis d'accord avec Clara -qui coécrit d'ailleurs ce mail avec moi- il n'y a pas d'offense à voir un père (ou assimilé) faire des bisous à son enfant. Mais Françoise Dolto (une psychologue française) a écrit dans "tout est language" qu'un adulte ne doit pas être nu face à son enfant car il ne doit pas se mettre sur un plan d'égalité avec son enfant. Il doit maintenir son influence protectrice.En revanche, elle "ne voit aucun problème" à ce que l'enfant soit nu. Ainsi, ce qui est grave pour elle, ce ne sont pas les bisous mais la douche prise avec Marie.


I think that it is very interesting to observe how the men change from being single and free to being responsible and becoming part of a family. The three men become the fathers and Marie is the daughter. The words here, father, daughter, that are related to 'family' are very close to those mentioned in the association of words section.