Just after Emmanuel Macron’s election to the presidency in May, the French television channel TF1 showed a documentary, Emmanuel Macron, les coulisses d’une victoire (behind the scenes of a victory), directed by Yann L’Hénoret. It is now available on Netflix as Emmanuel Macron: Behind the Rise, subtitled in English. Macron and his campaign team were filmed and recorded over the 200 days that culminated in his victory speech at the Louvre. Apparently, the film was inspired by The War Room, a 1994 film about Bill Clinton’s first presidential campaign. I think that most people in the UK with an interest in contemporary politics, not just in France, would find it worth watching.
One scene seemed particularly relevant to democratic politicians everywhere. Between the two rounds of voting in the presidential election, Macron is on a visit to the troubled Whirlpool factory in Amiens and finds that his rival, Marine Le Pen, is in the car park talking to the strikers. There is a discussion with his team as to whether, once she has left, he should do the same, including this at 1:18:20:
Woman Aide: We looked at the security angle.
EM: Don’t listen to the security guys. I’ll never be safe. That’s how the country is now. We have to take risks. We have to go to the heart of the fight, every time. Listen to the security guys and you end up like Hollande. You may be safe but you’ve died.
Parce que si vous écoutez les mecs de la sécurité, vous finissez comme Hollande. Peut-être que vous êtes en sécurité mais vous êtes mort.