Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The title of this French drama translates to The Most Beautiful Life. That "life" is the teaching profession, as practiced by the film's protagonist, played by Jean-Pierre Kerien. In the company of his wife Claire Maffei, Kerien decides to accept a government-financed position in French West Africa. The first part of the film deals with the difficulties encountered by the couple en route to their new home. The second half finds Kerien reassessing his dedication to his duties when it seems as though his wife has inaugurated a romance with handsome young engineer Roger Pigaut. The couple faces an even more daunting crisis when their only child succumbs to disease. At 120 minutes, Le Plus Belles des Vies unfolds its story at a leisurely, unforced pace.