Gentle-hearted and wry docu “Profils paysans: Le quotidien” reps a follow-up by photographer-turned-doc-helmer Raymond Depardon to his 2002 “Profils paysans I: L’approche.” Sequel catches up with mostly the same lot of struggling farmers in central France, some of whom have died or retired, while young blood arrives to work both the land and the increasingly important EU cash cow. Marked by Depardon’s characteristic long takes and deceptively simple composition, pic casts a relaxing spell but has surprisingly raw pockets of emotion. Further fest play is assured, followed by TV slots, but doc is unlikely to find distrib soil outside France.
Men and women of few well-chosen words, these peasant subjects tell the off-camera helmer of travails working the land in the face of economic and social change. Older interviewees quietly rage against their declining health, while the younger men bemoan their single status. Amandine Gagnaire, 22, goes against her generation’s grain by embracing agricultural life, but finds the going tough in her first year. All complain about EU and French national policy toward farmers. Four-legged creatures have scene-stealing walk-ons. Tech credits are clean and simple; running time just right.