An excellent biopic about the most famous French businessman. From a working-class background, Bernard Tapie had an insatiable desire for power, a phenomenal capacity for action and a natural charisma. From 1960 to 1990, he created several business, took over companies in difficulty, became a legendary soccer manager, tried his hand at singing and politics. He won, and he failed. Again and again. This hyperactive man had brilliant intuitions, and never let any obstacle discourage him. But he had no scruples either, and left a growing number of unemployed workers in his wake. Caught up in scandal, he embodies France’s fascination and contempt for economic success.
Bernard TAPIE… icon of the French businessman, a man who leaves no one indifferent. He’s that guy you love to hate. We disapprove of his unscrupulous methods, but we can’t help admiring his energy, his determination to shake up the establishment, his naive pugnacity in the face of those born into the strata of power. The rich and powerful never accept those who dare to rise up and join them. They find a thousand invisible ways to restrain and bully them.
We’re used to the cynicism of wealthy businessmen who crush the workers in their companies. But Tapie was born in the working class. An empathetic guy who understood the workers. What wouldn’t have shocked coming from a man born rich, disappointed coming from him. In the end, that he should have abandoned “his own” along the way, that is the sin French people cannot forgive Bernard Tapie.
The series succeeds in the tour de force of making us love this “bastard”, understand him, admire him without approving of him. The performance of Laurent Lafitte is simply stunning. Episode after episode, we’re drawn into the highly symbolic story of an ascent and a fall. Fascinating…
Tapie, 1 season, 7 episodes (50 mn), 2023, on Netflix
- Laurent Lafitte / Bernard Tapie
- Joséphine Japy / Dominique Tapie
- Patrick d’Assumpçao / Jean-Baptiste Tapie
- Fabrice Luchini / Marcel Loiseau
- Anne Benoît / Sandrine Leduc