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The Chorus (2004)

Les choristes (original title)
PG-13 | | Drama, Music | 17 March 2004 (France)
1:27 | Trailer

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The new teacher at a severely administered boys' boarding school works to positively affect the students' lives through music.
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 12 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean-Paul Bonnaire ...
Marie Bunel ...
Violette Morhange
Grégory Gatignol ...
Thomas Blumenthal ...
Cyril Bernicot ...
Le Querrec
Simon Fargeot ...
Théodule Carré-Cassaigne ...
Philippe du Janerand ...
Monsieur Langlois
Carole Weiss ...
La Comtesse
Erick Desmarestz ...
Le Docteur Dervaux


Fond de l'Etang is a boarding school for troubled boys located in the French countryside. In the mid-twentieth century, it is run by the principal M. Rachin, an egotistical disciplinarian whose official unofficial mantra for the school is "action - reaction", meaning that there will be severe consequences for any boy out of line. This approach does not seem to be working as the boys as a collective are an unruly bunch. In turn, the teachers don't teach, but are always watching out for the next subversive act from the boys. January 15, 1949 marks the arrival to the school of the new supervisor, M. Clément Mathieu, a middle-aged man who is grasping at finding his place in life after a series of failed endeavors. Although he does find the boys an unruly lot, Mathieu does not believe in the "action - reaction" policy, and as such, butts heads with Rachin while secretly undermining the policy. Slowly, Mathieu's approach of trying to match the discipline to the crime does have a positive ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language/sexual references and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

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Release Date:

17 March 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Chorus  »

Box Office


€5,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,193,442 (France) (19 March 2004)


$3,629,758 (USA) (20 May 2005)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Shortly after the movie, Jean-Baptiste Maunier quit Les Petits Chanteurs De Saint-Marc because he had trouble with the conductor Nicholas Porte that was saying over and over again than no one is irreplacible. See more »


As Rachin enters the car and leaves with his family towards the end of the movie, crew members are reflected on the car windows. A man with a cigarette in his mouth can be seen (at around 1h 30 mins) reflected first in the front side window and then in the back side window as the car drives past the camera. See more »


Clément Mathieu: You see evil everywhere.
Chabert: Here? Yes.
See more »


Referenced in Caché (2005) See more »


Music by Bruno Coulais
Orchestra: Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra-Sif 309, Conductor Deyan Pavlov'
© 2004 Warner Bros. Records,WEA Music (p) 2004 Galatée Films
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User Reviews

A wonderfully uplifting film.
20 January 2005 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

The locale for this French sub-titled film is a locked fortress-like school for poor boys from broken homes, WWII orphans and juvenile delinquents, very Dickensian in feel. The principal of the school,is a detestable man who abuses students and teachers equally. You've seen the plot before, of course, and some of the characters are "stock" sorts. But the acting of the lead, the teacher who "saves" the students by luring them into singing, is portrayed charmingly by Gerard Jugnot. Mostly bald, a bit stocky and no beauty, he is nonetheless disarming. The boy soprano, Jean-Baptiste Maunier, has a wonderful voice, and the chorus is splendid. Particularly fine was the score, almost entirely original, by Bruno Colais. I was looking for something inspiring on this bitter cold inaugural day in the U.S. Les Choristes made my spirit soar and reaffirmed that kindness, generosity of self and the gift of music still have the power to change people's lives.

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