Up 7,852 this week

Human Resources (1999)
"Ressources humaines" (original title)

 |  Drama  |  15 January 2000 (France)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 2,081 users   Metascore: 78/100
Reviews: 24 user | 44 critic | 25 from

The 35-hour work week has all of France in its thrall. This film turns it into a feature about economic and familial politics. Frank, a business school graduate, returns to his provincial ... See full summary »



(scenario), (collaboration)
0Check in

IMDb Picks: August

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in August.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 25 titles
created 30 May 2012
a list of 25 titles
created 14 Dec 2012
a list of 32 titles
created 28 Sep 2013
a list of 30 titles
created 17 Feb 2014
a list of 44 titles
created 27 Jul 2014

Related Items

Search for "Human Resources" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Human Resources (1999)

Human Resources (1999) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Human Resources.
19 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Human Resources I (2014)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

When a woman takes a new job, she discovers the skyscraper she works in is haunted by victims of a corporation's pursuit of profit. Unable to ignore injustice embodied by the disembodied, she sets out to reveal the truth.

Director: Keil Troisi
Stars: Sonia Williams, Aaron Troisi, James Goode
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A tragi-comedy centered on the HR manager of Israel's largest industrial bakery, who sets out to save the reputation of his business and prevent the publication of a defamatory article.

Director: Eran Riklis
Stars: Noah Silver, Mark Ivanir, Reymonde Amsallem
Time Out (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An unemployed man finds his life sinking more and more into trouble as he hides his situation from his family and friends.

Director: Laurent Cantet
Stars: Aurélien Recoing, Karin Viard, Serge Livrozet
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A rookie policeman from provincial Le Havre volunteers for the high pressure Parisian homicide bureau and is assigned to a middle-aged woman detective.

Director: Xavier Beauvois
Stars: Nathalie Baye, Jalil Lespert, Roschdy Zem
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A lesbian, an aspiring actor, an aspiring singer, a low-class marriage, a neighborhood community and 2 renowned directors have memorable less-than-24-hour-long experiences while living in/visiting the capital of Cuba.

Directors: Laurent Cantet, Benicio Del Toro, and 5 more credits »
Stars: Josh Hutcherson, Vladimir Cruz, Magali Wilson
L'enfant (2005)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Bruno and Sonia, a young couple living off her benefit and the thefts committed by his gang, have a new source of money: their newborn son.

Directors: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Stars: Jérémie Renier, Déborah François, Jérémie Segard
Human Resources (TV Series 2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
Stars: Dan Harris
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Pierre Courrège
Stars: Pierre Santini, Bruno Solo, Patrick Braoudé
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Enraged by the sale of the vaulting horse that she'd been promised as hers to ride, Gracieuse, a talented rider, dumps her job at a stable. She starts again from zero by accepting work as a... See full summary »

Director: Patricia Mazuy
Stars: Marina Hands, Bruno Ganz, Josiane Balasko
Jeux de plage (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Director: Laurent Cantet
Stars: Jean Lespert, Jalil Lespert, Julia Minguet
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A few high school students are organizing a demonstration in the bar where Serge is working as a waiter for his father. He tries to join in...

Director: Laurent Cantet
Stars: Maximilen Baglieri, Sarah Baglieri, Alexandre Belloy
Max & Lenny (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Director: Fred Nicolas
Stars: Camélia Pand'or, Jisca Kalvanda, Adam Hegazy


Cast overview, first billed only:
Jalil Lespert ...
Jean-Claude Vallod ...
Le père
Chantal Barré ...
La mère
Véronique de Pandelaère ...
Michel Begnez ...
Lucien Longueville ...
Le patron
Danielle Mélador ...
Danielle Arnoux, la syndicaliste
Pascal Sémard ...
Didier Emile-Woldemard ...
Françoise Boutigny ...
Félix Cantet ...
Marie Cantet ...
Sébastien Tauvel ...
Jean-François Garcia ...
Gaëlle Amouret ...


The 35-hour work week has all of France in its thrall. This film turns it into a feature about economic and familial politics. Frank, a business school graduate, returns to his provincial hometown to take a management position in the factory where his father has been working for 30 years. First Frank makes the mistake of actually asking the workers on the assembly line for their opinions. Then upper management manipulates his findings to lay off employees. This creates a huge rift, not only between labor and management, but between father and son. A human morality tale that evokes paternal and filial love, and illustrates the personal risk behind political ideas. Written by NDNF

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




See all certifications »


Official Sites:




Release Date:

15 January 2000 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Human Resources  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$29,526 (USA) (15 September 2000)


$116,866 (USA) (27 October 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Laurent Cantet's first feature film. See more »


Zip Jazz
Written by Stéphane Joly (as S. Joly), Xavier Escabasse (as X. Escabasse)
Published by X Music/Kosinus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Honor thy father and mother

Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novel 'The Brothers Karamazov', for all its monumental breadth and depth in philosophy and theology, has at its very core the dominant figure of the Father, whose callous authoritativeness and irresponsible disposition--and eventual murder--have decidedly molded the characters and philosophies of his four sons--Mitya, Ivan, Alyosha, Smerdyakov--and altogether marked their essentially tragic fate.

Two films I recently saw, though not really epic in scope, have arguably imbued the spirit of the literary masterpiece:the French 'Human Resources' by Laurent Cantet and the Russian 'Mother and Son' by Aleksander Sokurov are predominantly deferential to the parental figures, respectively, of the Father and the Mother.

If Dostoyevsky's 'Karamazov' is in the manner of the psychological/existential probing of the human soul with a murder-mystery on the surface, in what way do the two films work on their archetypal themes?

'Human Resources' works as a labor drama as it involves an educated son (Jalil Lespert as Franck)who returns to his hometown after years of studying in Paris to be trained as part of the management staff of a factory(whose name serves as the film's title)where his father(Jean-Claude Vallod as Jean-Claude)has been devotedly working for 30 long years.

Despite being imbued with fresh ideas and attitude, Franck tries as much as possible to maintain a "moderate" persona at work in deference to his father's unquestioning servility--to the point of becoming an anonymous piece among the assembly of workers(who isn't, anyway?).So we can initially see that the son's newly-assumed, though arguably much higher, position is "humbled" before the father's mere length of service.

But little did Franck expect that he would be gradually immersed in--and eventually, fiercely committed to--a sensitive issue regarding a planned assembly-line scheme that almost all the factory workers consider as exploitative and inhuman, as it would basically enforce the policy of "reduced hours and workers, forced production quota, less pay." I say "almost", because everyone else is visibly concerned except for the young man's father, with whom the "business as usual" philosophy is adhered to the fullest, despite the fact that in the near future, the management would already have "no business" with him.And this is what agitates Franck further.

Thus, in an emotionally-shattering confrontation, the son makes it known to the father the worthlessness of all his labors and value as an assembly-line worker.With his new-found cause, Franck may have saved his father's reputation, but not his own future("When are you going?" and "Where is your place?" are his meaningful queries by the film's end).

While 'Mother and Son' is an entirely two-character drama(Gudrun Geyer and Aleksei Ananishov in the title roles)that is outwardly simple but, in fact, open to multiple interpretations.I have my own take on the story(uncertain though it may be), but for fear of pre-empting those who might want to see the film sooner or later(and of putting myself to shame), I better not dare to give my piece of mind on the matter for the time being(I patiently watched the film three times for three straight days, but still...!).Instead, let me say that, as this was made by a contemporary Russian filmmaker(acclaimed in Cannes for his equally maverick works, 'Russian Ark' and 'Father and Son'), it was closer to the mood and leanings of the above-mentioned Russian literary classic--dark, brooding, eerie, lambasting.If you thought Andrei Tarkovskij was enough to rattle your brains out, think again.

The disciple has learned his lesson from the master--by heart.(I have another Russian film in waiting, '100 Days Before the Command' by Hussein Erkenov, said to be another 'obedient' disciple.)

With regard to the narrative technique, the two films move radically on different threads.

Laurent's work is molded according to the style of a neorealist "docu-drama"--the emphasis is on the commonplace and the seemingly trivial, but not to be taken for granted;the characters are portrayed by non-professional or first-time actors who, for the most part, have lived the lives they essay onscreen;and to further bolster the authentic feel, dramatic frills and shrills, the "workshop-intensive"-type of acting are shunned(this isn't to say, however, that there are no crucial turning points in the film, as the above-mentioned confrontation between the father and son indicates;it's just that the emotions are raw, rather than garnished).Again, the viewers are asked to observe, to immerse themselves in the lives and concerns of these ordinary people, who are essentially no different from them.

I say "again", because 'Human Resources' was released around the time when other French-language dramas of the same mold had initially made their way to the silver screen:'La Promesse', 'Life of Jesus', 'Rosetta', 'Humanity', 'Dreamlife of Angels.' There seemed to be a "trend" back then.

But if these films--particularly 'Rosetta' and 'Humanity'--tended to be "inward-looking", to dwell in their anxiously-guarded private world, Laurent's film, as its primary issue(the workers contending with a proposed labor scheme)calls for, doesn't only concentrate on the two central characters but takes into consideration the other critical characters as well--their fellow factory workers(in the same way that Dostoyevsky pierces through the souls not just of the Karamazov brothers but also of the various important figures that directly or subtly affect their lives).

For his part, Sokurov's excruciatingly meditative and tranquil dialectics in his film(as if some kind of painter was deeply-absorbed in putting on canvas every scene), with an attendant sense of something forbidden taking place, is counterbalanced by the pastoral countryside, now and then draped in golden sunshine rays, heavy clouds and smooth wind, an expressionist camera focus and a few of the most astonishing shots ever composed onscreen.The "exact" nature of the "troubled" relationship between the mother and son can be gleaned from their evocative gestures and utterances--like "You always kept your eyes on me.I was ashamed", the son says to the mother and "I was afraid that they would take you away from me", the mother lets it known to the son.

Ah, to dissect an age-old commandment!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Fermeture des usines Renault à Vilvoorde (1998) silverauk
Discuss Human Resources (1999) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: