The ending of the film “La Nouvelle Vie de Paul Sneijder” with Thierry Lhermitte is ambiguous and differs from the novel “Le Cas Sneijder” by Jean-Paul Dubois. The director had thought to bring some precision.
The new life of Paul Sneijder: from novel to film
Worn by Thierry Lhermittefeature film shows how a man who has spent his whole life being a good little soldier suddenly decides to change his life after a terrible and extremely rare elevator accident in which he lost his daughter. So he gives up his career as a senior executive to become a dog walker to overcome his grief, despite the concerns of those around him. In addition, he sets off to Dubai to climb to the top of the world’s tallest building in an elevator to overcome his phobia.
A different ending
In adapting the novel by Jean-Paul Dubois, director Thomas Vincent made several changes with his co-screenwriter Yaël Cojot-Goldberg, particularly regarding end. He explained as follows at the time of release:
Yaël and I ended up formulating that the result of the book disappointed us as moviegoers. What we may accept from the darkness at the end of a novel, as a melancholy thought to carry, is not what we accept from a film.
So, they decided to modify the character’s trajectory. He travels to Dubai to face his phobia of elevators and win this war. As for the end of The new life of Paul Sneijder, the director admits that it is unclear and that we cannot know what he will do with this new life. However, he wanted to bring his vision:
The ending is unclear, we don’t know what he will do with this new life. I don’t know either. Sometimes I think we can find him, like Harry Dean Stanton’s character in “Paris-Texas”, walking in the desert, wearing a red cap and carrying a can of water.