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Monsieur Ibrahim (2003)
"Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran" (original title)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 8,287 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 55 user | 57 critic | 32 from Metacritic.com

In Paris, a Turkish shop owner befriends a Jewish boy in his mid-teens.

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Monsieur Ibrahim Deneji
...
Moses 'Momo' Schmitt
...
Le père de 'Momo'
Isabelle Renauld ...
La mère de 'Momo'
Lola Naymark ...
Myriam
Anne Suarez ...
Mata Gabin ...
Céline Samie ...
Eva
...
La star
...
Le vendeur voiture
Guillaume Rannou ...
Le realisateur
Manuel Le Lièvre ...
Le moniteur auto-école (as Manuel Lelièvre)
Daniel Znyk ...
Le gendarme
Françoise Armelle ...
La maitresse d'école
Sylvie Herbert ...
L'eximinateur
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Storyline

In a street called Blue in a very poor neighborhood in Paris, Monsieur Ibrahim is an old Muslim Turkish owner of a small market. He becomes friend of the teenager Jewish Moises, tenderly nicknamed Momo, who lives with his father in a small apartment on the other side of the street. Monsieur Ibrahim gives paternal love and teaches the knowledge of the Qur'an to the boy, receiving in return love and respect. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

turkish | love | jewish | boy | friend | See All (171) »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexual content | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 September 2003 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Monsieur Ibrahim  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$65,696 (USA) (13 February 2004)

Gross:

$2,823,837 (USA) (30 July 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Monsieur Ibrahim: To find out if a country is rich or poor, look at the bins. If there are bins and no rubbish, it's rich. If there's rubbish by the bins, it's neither rich nor poor... it's touristy. And if there's rubbish but no bins, then it's poor.
See more »

Connections

References Contempt (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Babylone 21-29
Sung by Claude Véga
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User Reviews

moving coming-of-age story with a starmaking performance
10 October 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

'Monsieur Ibrahim' is a fine coming-of-age tale set in 1960's Paris. Young Pierre Boulanger gives a remarkably assured performance as Moses, a Jewish teen living with his cold, skinflint of a dad in a less-than-savory part of town. Abandoned by his mother and living in the shadow of a brother who has himself fled the scene, Moses leads an embittered existence, seeking surcease in the beds of the local prostitutes who ply their trade on the street where he lives. Moses is finally befriended by an aged shopkeeper named Ibrahim Demirdji, a Safi Muslim who, after Moses' father commits suicide, adopts the boy and instills in him valuable life lessons, gleaned from his religious training and his long years of experience.

In terms of its storyline, 'Monsieur Ibrahim' offers little that is new here (the idea of an older mentor figure raising an orphan child of a different religion goes at least as far back as 'The Two of Us' in 1968 and probably much further) . Where it excels is in its tenderhearted view of daily life and in its subtle plea for understanding between Arab and Jew. Moses is an almost heartbreakingly ordinary kid, a fact which makes his story all the more compelling (he has much of the rough-and-tumble poignancy of the boy in 'The 400 Blows'). We can identify with every emotion he is going through on his painful journey to adulthood: his fears, his insecurities, his need for acceptance, his appreciation of simple kindnesses. Moses lives in a world where life can sometimes be cruel, but where fellow human beings reach out to help one another in their moments of greatest need.

This is a beautiful, heartfelt film that doesn't stand on its head to try and impress us. It seeps into our hearts one scene at a time, until, by the end, we realize what a profound emotional impact it has had on us. Veteran actor Omar Sharif is wonderful as the solid and wise Monsieur Ibrahim, but it is Boulanger who is the real revelation here. This amazing young actor is the true heart and soul of the film, an absolute natural. He is very rarely off screen, and he rivets our attention on his character in a way that most highly paid movie actors can merely dream about doing. I hope he makes many more films in the future.


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