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Dheepan (2015)

R | | Crime, Drama | 13 May 2016 (USA)
Dheepan is a Sri Lankan Tamil warrior who flees to France and ends up working as a caretaker outside Paris.

Director:

Writers:

(dialogue), (screenplay) | 4 more credits »

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 6 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Brahim
Faouzi Bensaïdi ...
Monsieur Habib
...
Youssouf
Bass Dhem ...
Azziz
Franck Falise ...
Le gardien du Hall C
Joséphine de Meaux ...
La directrice de l'école
...
Le juriste au foyer
Nathan Anthonypillai ...
L'interprète
Vasanth Selvam ...
Colonel Cheran
Kartik Krishnan ...
Le faussaire au Sri Lanka
Rudhra ...
La femme du camp de réfugié
Tassadit Mandi ...
La dame dans l'escalier
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Storyline

Dheepan is a Tamil freedom fighter, a Tiger. In Sri Lanka, the Civil War is reaching its end, and defeat is near. Dheepan decides to flee, taking with him two strangers - a woman and a little girl - hoping that they will make it easier for him to claim asylum in Europe. Arriving in Paris, the 'family' moves from one temporary home to another until Dheepan finds work as the caretaker of a run-down housing block in the suburbs. He works to build a new life and a real home for his 'wife' and his 'daughter', but the daily violence he confronts quickly reopens his war wounds, and Dheepan is forced to reconnect with his warrior's instincts to protect the people he hopes will become his true family. Written by Polly_Kat

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When the war continues to rage in your heart and mind.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and brief sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

13 May 2016 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Erran  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$20,249 (USA) (6 May 2016)

Gross:

$247,597 (USA) (29 July 2016)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First film by Jacques Audiard to win the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. See more »

Quotes

Dheepan: The war is not over, but for me... it's over.
See more »

Connections

References Nayakan (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Revelations
(Trailer)
Written and Performed by Solomon Grey
© 2015 Bronte Film and Television Limited, under exclusive licence to Decca, a division of Universal Music Operations Ltd
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User Reviews

The story of a displaced Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger
18 November 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Reviewed by Larry Gleeson. Viewed during 2015 AFI FEST.

"Dheepan," is the latest work by director Jacques Audiard. Audiard has to his credits the critically acclaimed and well nominated films "Rust and Bone"(2012), and "A Prophet"(2009). "Dheepan," is written by Audiard, Thomas Bidegain and Noe Debre', and tells the story of a Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger, called Dheepan. Dheepan is played by Indian actor, Antonythasan Jesuthasan.

Winner of the coveted Palm d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, "Deephan," is a visual feast beginning in the jungles of Sri Lanka and the ensuing shots depicting Dheepan's cultural transformation in the night streets of Paris. Epinine Momenceau provides the cinematography in a compelling manner along with a nicely done soundtrack by Nicolas Jarr.

As the film opens we see Dheepan and fellow Tamil warriors placing dry palm branches over a funeral pyre. Dheepan place his military fatigues on top and lights the fire. Sri Lanka is mired in a bloody civil war. Dheepan along with an unknown woman called Yalini, played by Kalieaswari Srinivasan, and a young orphan girl, Illayaal, played by Claudine Vinasithamby, decide to flee the strife together and set out for a new life in the suburbs of Paris posing as a displaced refugee family. With the inventiveness of a well versed interpreter, Dheepan and Yalini pass their social services interview and find employment as caretakers of a not so well-to-do housing project and one of it's incoherent inhabitants.To complicate matters, Illayaal is having difficulties at school, Dheepan is contacted by a Tamil warrior who insists Dheepan continue the fight for freedom, and Yalini is becoming attracted to the gang leader nephew of her incoherent charge. This is all on top of the deeper humanistic component of three strangers living together as a family in a small apartment in an entirely foreign culture.

Soon, however, Dheepan and his refugee family begin to pull together as they experience renewed forms of violence. Their challenging suburban life becomes increasingly dangerous due to drug activity and an ensuing turf war that hits too close to home. Dheepan, working primarily as an janitor, takes a stand and declares a no-fire zone between his apartment building and the adjacent housing project much to the disbelief and chagrin of the well-armed gang members. As the turf war breaks out and spills over into the "safe zone," Dheepan shifts gears and his switch is flipped. He becomes an uber-soldier defending and protecting what has become his. This is an extraordinary transformation as he resorts to survival skills presumably developed as a Tamil freedom fighter. The action sequences heightens the drama in its fragmented and rather hazy segments as Dheepan's deep and powerful emotional chords propel him through the violence and chaos until victory is his.

All in all, I found "Dheepan," to be a very moving film with its riveting action sequences contrasting with its earlier tender, more human sequences. Audiard takes a very timely topic, the displaced refugee, and embodies him and her, with very human characteristics. Highly Recommended.


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