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Welcome (2009)

Bilal is 17 years old, a Kurdish boy from Iraq. He sets off on an adventure-filled journey across Europe. He wants to get to England to see his love who lives there. Bilal finally reaches ... See full summary »

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Writers:

(original scenario), (original scenario) | 3 more credits »

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13 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Simon Calmat
Firat Ayverdi ...
...
Marion Calmat
Derya Ayverdi ...
Mina
Thierry Godard ...
Bruno
Mehmet Selim Akgul ...
Zoran (as Selim Akgül)
...
Koban
Murat Subasi ...
Mirko
...
Lieutenant Caratini
Yannick Renier ...
Alain
Mouafaq Rushdie ...
Le père de Mina
...
La mère de Mina (as Behi Djanati Ataï)
Patrick Ligardes ...
Le voisin de Simon
Jean-Pol Brissart ...
Le juge
Blandine Pélissier ...
La juge aux affaires familiales
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Storyline

Bilal is 17 years old, a Kurdish boy from Iraq. He sets off on an adventure-filled journey across Europe. He wants to get to England to see his love who lives there. Bilal finally reaches Calais, but how do you cover 32 kilometers of the English Channel when you can't swim? The boy soon discovers that his trip won't be as easy as he imagined... The community of struggling illegal aliens in Calais is captured with authenticity, from the point of view of people who arrived there knowing nothing about France. This immigrant drama, with wonderful performances by the actors, is a strong story which uses documentary austerity and minimalist style to create a great emotional impact. Written by Warsaw Film Festival

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Friendship has no borders. True love has no limits.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

11 March 2009 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Bem-Vindo  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$6,528 (USA) (7 May 2010)

Gross:

$13,461 (USA) (14 May 2010)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The neighbor of Simon who rats him out to the police, has a doormat with the word 'Welcome' printed on it. See more »

Goofs

When Simon talks to Marion in his kitchen, she comes to him with the coffee-pot in her left hand and he touches that arm. In the next shot, she is suddenly no longer holding the pot, and when she steps aside it is already standing on the table. See more »

Quotes

Marion Calmat: Know what barring people from shops means? Want me to buy you a history-book?
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Chashme Baddoor (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

A la nage
by Nicola Piovani
© 2009 Nord Ouest
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User Reviews

 
Life Guard
10 May 2011 | by See all my reviews

"I knew a boy who tried to swim across the lake, It's a hell of a thing to do, They say the lake is as big as the ocean, I wonder If he knew about it" (Yoko Ono,lyrics slightly modified)

Lioret is one of the most promising French directors .His "Je Vais Bien Ne T'En Fais Pas " deeply moved the crowds .His "welcome" is at least as good,as harrowing and as...pessimistic , noir as his precedent effort.

He chose the right actor as the lifeguard :Vincent Lindon was perhaps never better in his part of a disoriented man ,estranged from his wife , in search of the meaning of his life .With his weary face ,his disenchanted looks ,he seems to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders .Which he does ,in a way.

France ,par excellence the country of refuge (particularly political refugees),is shown in a less-than-flattering light than usual;on the other hand ,one can wonder whether the United Kingdom is really the promised land as it appears in the film.In Calais ,people who gave a shelter to illegal migrants were actually troubled by the Police .Although this is not a true story,all that happens to the lifeguard is credible.

Images of Police vans,of sad beaches ,of free meals ,of informers (the neighbor claims that Simon helps the young Kurd in return for sexual relations!)

The divorced hero has become a cliché;but Lioret makes brilliant use of the screenplay cliché: it's perhaps because Simon has become a lonely man that he takes in his young protégé (one should note he's got no children whereas he is in his fifties ).Simon is ready to give all: his reputation ("yes I'm a gay,I sleep with him ,and I sleep with guys that's why my wife walks out on me" ),his dear treasures (his gold medal:"I gave him" ),and maybe even his job .

To swim across the Channel to get to your girlfriend Mina is an impossible task when you are 17 and you're not a first class swimmer.It's the young man's dream and Simon makes his dream his.

"Welcome" is a great movie,one of the best French movies of the last ten years.


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