Sokol and Lorna, two Albanian emigrants in Belgium, dream of leaving their dreary jobs to set up a snack bar. They need money, and a permanent resident status. Claudy is a junkie - he needs... See full summary »
Igor and his father, Roger, are making a decent living renting apartments to illegal immigrants and sometimes working them illegally (among other scams). But when the building inspector ... See full summary »
Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.
At a Montréal public grade school, an Algerian immigrant is hired to replace a popular teacher who committed suicide in her classroom. While helping his students deal with their grief, his own recent loss is revealed.
At about 11, the stubborn and impulsive Cyril seems on his way to delinquency: he has no mother, his father wants a new life without him, so he's in a foster institution. He searches for his father, wanting him and his bike. Through the intersession of Samantha, a hairdresser Cyril happens upon, he gets his bike back, and she offers to take him into her home on weekends. He remains aloof from her and gets involved with a young crook. Is Cyril intent on driving Samantha away - and what then? Written by
Based on the idea of a film about "a woman who helps a boy emerge from the violence that holds him prisoner" by Dardenne Brothers. See more »
When the hairdresser is leaving the orphanage after she returned Cyrill's bike the car she iss driving makes the sound of Diesel engine, but in the next scene with the same car the car sounds like it has a petrol engine. See more »
This film takes place in Europe (Belgium, apparently) so it has far less of the violence that would accompany the same story set in America. But otherwise the story is particularly painful to watch because the essential elements - a kid without a father, his self-hate and anger, the substitute father figures laying in wait - are directly relevant to the American context. In a lean, tough story, the film takes us through a broad tour of the issues and risks and even reasons for hope in these situations. Young Thomas Doret fiercely embodies the aching and the rage of a boy who wants a father at any price and is a near-force of nature in trying to obtain what should be his by right. Cécile De France's Samantha has numerous real-life counter-parts, credited by more than one survivor of these dilemmas, but not always successful in their roles as passionate rescuers. How this particular story turns out is not so important as the realization that all across the world children live in Cyril's situation; some make it, many don't.
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