24 February 2017 | BeneCumb
A strong and realistic series about policymakers with different goals and values
/refers to Season 1/
Works based on political struggles and intrigues are always tricky as the proportion of fiction and non-fiction is not often clear and people within and beyond daily politics have inevitably different views and conceptions. Here, in Baron Noir, the "shadows and demons" of politics are revealed through left parties, with a certain involvement of trade unions and business organisations that are traditionally strong in France. Things, events, ideas and partnerships change fast, and the whole course of events is like based on proverbs and sayings, e.g. "desperate times call for desperate measures", "all's well that ends well", "process is more important than the result" - to name a few... Friends and allies come and go, people entangle themselves in the network of lies and injustice, and you ponder on and over how all this would end. Well, the end solution is not bright and clear, as Season 2 is already planned...
As for performances, they were rather intense and deep, the French spirit and attitudes fully included, but most of the cast, incl. Kad Merad was unfamiliar to me - although I have seen several French films and series in recent years. In my opinion, Niels Arestrup as Francis Laugier had too limited opportunities to show his talent; the president was limited time on screen and in unvaried surroundings and circumstances.
Well, Baron noir is not House of Cards to the full, but comparable to e.g. Borgen and Les hommes de l'ombre. A good watch - unless you are too involved in (leftist) politics somewhere...
PS Season 2 is more about political technology and apparently less interesting to those far from politics, but... And the creation of Season 3 is not excluded either.