6.9/10
2,540
26 user 59 critic

A Secret (2007)

Un secret (original title)
A 15-year-old boy unearths a shocking family secret.

Director:

Writers:

(scenario, adaptation and dialogue), (scenario, adaptation and dialogue) | 1 more credit »

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

ON DISC
4 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Little Lili (2003)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A group of cinematic spend a holiday in the French countryside. The film provides insight in their relationships, including that between a young man and a local girl, Lili. She uses the ... See full summary »

Director: Claude Miller
Stars: Nicole Garcia, Bernard Giraudeau, Jean-Pierre Marielle
Sister Smile (2009)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A biography of the Belgian nun Jeannine Deckers, who became a popular singer in the early 1960s and struggled with the contradiction between the church and her true self.

Director: Stijn Coninx
Stars: Cécile De France, Sandrine Blancke, Chris Lomme
Irène (2002)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Irène is a beautiful girl working in Paris, she soon meets a manager and hopes a love story with him. But he tells a lie, so she falls in love with a house painter.

Director: Ivan Calbérac
Stars: Cécile De France, Bruno Putzulu, Olivier Sitruk
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A black comedy centered around a TV weather girl and the two very different men who pursue her.

Director: Claude Chabrol
Stars: Ludivine Sagnier, Benoît Magimel, François Berléand
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A magistrate investigates a corporate executive.

Director: Claude Chabrol
Stars: Isabelle Huppert, François Berléand, Patrick Bruel
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Clara is happily married to a promising lawyer and lives in Paris. After the sudden death of her mother, Clara has to assume responsibility for her younger sister Lily, whose extreme sensitivity makes her vulnerable.

Director: Fabienne Berthaud
Stars: Diane Kruger, Ludivine Sagnier, Denis Ménochet
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A young woman arrives in Paris where she finds a job as a waitress in bar next on Avenue Montaigne that caters to the surrounding theaters and the wealthy inhabitants of the area. She will meet a pianist, a famous actress and a great art collector, and become acquainted with the "luxurious" world her grandmother has told her about since her childhood.

Director: Danièle Thompson
Stars: Cécile De France, Valérie Lemercier, Albert Dupontel
Une aventure (2005)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

Cecile and Julien begin their new life together. Julien works long hours in a video library, a world full of pictures. Coming home late one night, he encounters a young, beautiful, ... See full summary »

Director: Xavier Giannoli
Stars: Ludivine Sagnier, Nicolas Duvauchelle, Bruno Todeschini
Love Crime (2010)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Ruthless executive Christine brings on Isabelle as her assistant, and she takes delight in toying with the young woman's innocence. But when the protégé's ideas become tempting enough for ... See full summary »

Director: Alain Corneau
Stars: Ludivine Sagnier, Kristin Scott Thomas, Patrick Mille
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Given up for adoption as a toddler, troubled teenager Thomas becomes obsessed with tracking down his birth mother. After years of searching, Thomas finds her single, with a small child, ... See full summary »

Directors: Claude Miller, Nathan Miller
Stars: Vincent Rottiers, Sophie Cattani, Christine Citti
Möbius (2013)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

An FSB officer falls in love with his agent, an American woman, who works as a trader in a Russian bank.

Director: Eric Rochant
Stars: Jean Dujardin, Cécile De France, Tim Roth
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Alain Moreau sings for one of the few remaining dance-bands in Clermont-Ferrand. Though something of an idol amongst his female audience he has a melancholic awareness of the slow ... See full summary »

Director: Xavier Giannoli
Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Cécile De France, Mathieu Amalric
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Tania Stirn / Grimbert
...
Maxime Nathan Grinberg / Grimbert
...
Hannah Golda Stirn / Grinberg
...
Louise
...
François Grimbert à 37 ans
Nathalie Boutefeu ...
Esther
Yves Verhoeven ...
Georges
...
Commandant Béraud
Sam Garbarski ...
Joseph
Orlando Nicoletti ...
Simon Grinberg à 7 ans
...
Robert Stirn
Valentin Vigourt ...
François Grimbert à 7 ans
Quentin Dubuis ...
François Grimbert à 14 ans
Chantal Banlier ...
Maria
Myriam Fuks ...
Mère Hannah
Edit

Storyline

In 1953, a sensitive French boy finds out from a neighbor that his family's Jewish. François Grimbert becomes a physician, and gradually peels the layers of his buried family history which resulted in his difficult upbringing, raised as Catholic by his "Aryan" appearing parents. His athletic father labored to stamp out stereotypical Jewish characteristics he perceived in his son, to keep the family's many secrets, as most relatives fought in World War II, and later were hauled off to labor and death camps by the Gestapo. Based on a true story. Written by David Stevens

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

3 October 2007 (France)  »

Also Known As:

A Secret  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$37,135 (USA) (5 September 2008)

Gross:

$623,415 (USA) (1 May 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Eva Green was considered for the role of Tania and Pascal Elbé for the role of Maxime See more »

Connections

Features Olympia Part One: Festival of the Nations (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Maréchal nous voilà!
Music by Andre Montagnard
Lyrics by Andre Montagnard and Charles Courtioux
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
not everything works, but when it does it's some riveting, tragic stuff
26 October 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of the big achievements of Un Secret which must be noted is that the director, Claude Miller, doesn't entirely sympathize with his characters or make them out to be all completely good Jews. They're not. This is a film concerning the holocaust that doesn't just make a blanket statement like "Nazis = Bad". No, there were Jews who were in denial, and tried to cloud over the horrible fact that was upon all of Europe, and indeed it's when the film takes its most dissecting view at the flaws of these characters that the veneer is stripped away of completely innocent people being swept up in the maelstrom. While Miller obviously acknowledges and shows the horror of anti-semitism in France (one brief scene in a classroom showing Night and Fog is especially startling) and of the rise of Hitler, he puts his eye on the Grinberg family and what really happened between François Grimbert's parents (name changed when he was a kid) before and during World War 2.

Miller's approach with Un Secret is a tricky one structurally, and it doesn't quite find it's footing until a third of the way into the film. He tries to find a back-and-forth-and-back form of dealing with three periods of time: 1930s, 1950s/1960s and 1985 when everybody is older and it turns to black and white (an opposite touch that works, for a moment), and it's only effective in about the first five minutes. I became wary of those sudden jumps to the 1985 portion of the film, where we see an old Maxime Nathan Grinberg (Patrick Bruel) grieving over the loss of his dog and his son trying to find him, and found it didn't strike anywhere near as well as the 50s scenes. On top of this, after all of the film has ended, that huge chunk of the film with the focus on that first marriage of Grinberg's with Hannah and his very obvious but eventually-acted-on infatuation with Tania (very sexy Cecile de France) was far more effective dramatically and tonally than anything else in the film.

This is not to say Un Secret doesn't cast a very fascinating look into this particular boy's lack of perspective and of his father's determination to compete on a physical level with the Germans, to almost "be" one in a perfectionist sense athletically, and how this one secret is part of scarred memory, attachment to one's faith and religion and who they are, and love and lust. The cast is generally excellent, with Bruel, De France and Sagnier delivering work with nuance and exquisite, painful emotions that resonate from one into the next scene (Sagnier is so good she gets us to feel repulsed, or at least taken completely aback, by what she does while in hiding). And the moods of joy and despair in a Jewish family circa 1930s and 1940s- and the subsequent self-imposed shame of people in Europe even after the war ended- is captured with some real power and accuracy.

But Miller also can't completely fix together his narrative; he feels the need to jump around as if it will create a really intriguing rhythm, where if he stepped back and told it without sudden jumps or surreal bits like the "brother" in the boy's bedroom at night the film would benefit. There is also a lack of a real resolution; the 1985 scene just didn't cut it for me as far as an unspoken father/son thing, and despite it sounding conventional a confrontation of the boy to his parents might have brought something more interesting than the uneven subtlety of the ending. A lot of this is so hearth-breaking in its true dimensions and probing of the subject that the only real disappointment is how it doesn't fell... complete with itself.


16 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The song in the trailer terrahall
Anyone else notice lmhoyt2000
what was up with the coughing? reen6teen
his fantasies about the older brother elexa_glome
significance of Hannah's finger crooking petitchatnoir
Discuss A Secret (2007) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?