Lambert, a burned-out case, works the night shift at a gas station, rarely speaking, living alone, drinking. Bensoussan, raised in foster homes, now a small-time pusher for a bar owner ... See full summary »
1863. Etienne Lantier, who has been fired from a railway company for being involved in union activities, lands a miner's job in the North of France. He finds bed and lodging at the Maheus',... See full summary »
It's mid 19th century, north of France. The story of a coal miner's town. They are exploited by the mine's owner. One day the decide to go on strike, and then the authorities repress them. Written by
Michel Rudoy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Near the end of the film, when Etienne and Catherine are looking for the way out of the mine, we see the shadows of the lamps on the right wall of the tunnel. It's to be supposed that the only light inside the mine came from the lamps. See more »
Coal mine owner:
A strike is a disaster for everyone. Within a week you'll all starve. Then what will you do?
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How in the world do you get out of exploitation by the rich?
"Germinal" is a vivid, colorful, eloquent rendering of how the life of mine workers was in Europe in late 19th century. It is also a powerful illustration of how a strike could come about in that time, and how difficult - almost hopeless - it could seem for those dirt-poor people to try and improve their miserable life conditions. Of course, the contrast with the bourgeoisie is striking and thought-provoking. Depardieu (as Maheu) is, as usual, a giant figure, and most other actors are also very convincing. One question that remains when you saw it all is : can you really change a society's deep, unfair structure without violence?
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