A map appears on the screen in fragments – the “trail of the asphodels”, a circuit hike somewhere in Brittany. For the duration of the film, beekeeper Jean and his dog Léon walk the entire path, the camera in their wake. From his very first steps, Jean launches into a wildly inspired soliloquy, a half-mystical, half-burlesque gloss on the filmmaker’s own approach: a shaggy, bountiful exploration of the area the path crosses. Far from being content to follow the linear route, the tale multiplies the swerves, pauses and detours in space and time. Maxime Martinot and his filming accomplices invent an animal camera as stealthy and on the lookout as Léon trotting back and forth along the path, offering the fragile beauty of an image that doesn’t seek to capture anything in particular but allows itself to be seduced, its attention caught by everything it sees. The walk leads to encounters both random (a hare, some hikers) and organised (some donkey breeders, au hasard). The editing, impressive with its syncopated liveliness, tears holes in the fabric of time: Jean hears voices speaking Breton to him, and his arrival at a farm conjures up fragments of a family album. From one discovery to the next, Jean ends up an older version of himself, predicting his own future. Without losing its luminous light touch, The Trail of the Asphodels then opens up to the gloomier horizon of ecological disaster – the disappearance of bees and the last remaining slopes. Allowing yourself to do anything whilst sticking to a path… a blueprint for life and how to inhabit this world takes shape during this walk along the asphodel trail. The area is far, far vaster than the map.