Buenos Aires/Los Angeles-based Nunchaku’s directing collective The Lover (Martin Jalfen & Nico Kasakoff) chronicles tender hearts and large plastic heads in the affecting and stylish 3:30 music video, “Profite,” for French singer/songwriter Benjamin Biolay featuring singer and iconic Chanel beauty Vanessa Paradis. The video features the wax and subsequent wane of a spontaneous relationship between a striking woman a curious motel innkeeper.
Says Martin Jalfen of The Lover, “We have two characters: Him and Her. ‘Her’ represents life and movement. ‘Him’ on the contrary is the vivid representation of those beings who lead a routine life, stuck in the same place, waiting for someone to help them experience something new and find a bit of love. ‘Him’ is a metaphor of how daily things plead to be seen as someone special.”
The man who runs the motel, the leading male character, is blessed—or cursed—with an enormous, plastic-like head with a permanently etched scowl. He shares screen time with a fetching young woman, who is presumably looking for a fling. Throughout their eventual relationship, there is a metaphorical elephant in the room: Will she eventually have to leave the motel? How will this affect the besotted man?
Benjamin Biolay has had a long and fruitful career as a French musician. He has written and produced for his sister, Coralie Clément, and has written numerous songs for singer Keren Ann, as well as brought brought back the career of Henri Salvador with his songwriting. He has also released nine of his own albums, including his most recent release in 2012, Vengeance, which features “Profite.”
“Profite” is filmed in meticulously composed, droll voyeuristic style, almost as if we’re spying on the couple. The Lover also highlights touching, human moments throughout the presumably weekend-long affair. The big head featured in the video is a surprising experimental touch, the type of detail for which The Lover is known.
Continues Jalfen, “One of the big challenges was to integrate the story in a very organic way for such a weird and interesting character. After seeing this character with his big head in a couple of shots you start ignoring it and focus on the narrative. To help this happen, we decided to imbue the story with a very naturalistic look.”
In 2008, Martin Jalfen’s groundbreaking short, “The Blindness of the Woods,” screened at numerous festivals including Sundance, Milano Film Festival, Los Angeles Film Festival and Bafici. The film utilized a mix of live-action and 3D characters and won the Canal+ Award at the Clermont-Ferrand Film Festival, and also screened as part of The Flux Screening Series at the Hammer Museum. Jalfen and The Lover also have an illustrious career working in commercials, having worked with numerous high-profile clients such as The Discovery Channel, Nextel, Smart, Doritos, Fox, Toyota and 7UP.
Production Company: Nunchaku
Creative Director: Adrian Castagna
Director: The Lover – Martin Jalfen & Nico Kasakoff
Executive Producer: Leda Nasio
Producer: Angela Diaz
Production Coordinator: Victoria Vallejo
Director of Photography: Gonzalo Amat & Paula Huidobro
1st AC: Hilda Mercado
2nd AC: Uxue Jimenez
Editor: Alan Martin Segal
Wardrobe Stylist: Carolina Pepe
Art: Le Chef Costumier, Inc.
Girl: Ivana Korab
Guy: Eddy Rise Jr.