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Welcome (2009)

Not Rated | | Drama | 11 March 2009 (France)
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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 »

Director:

Philippe Lioret

Writers:

Philippe Lioret (original scenario), Emmanuel Courcol (original scenario) | 2 more credits »
13 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French | Kurdish | English | Turkish

Release Date:

11 March 2009 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Bem-Vindo See more »

Filming Locations:

Calais, Pas-de-Calais, France See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,528, 9 May 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$13,461, 16 May 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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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
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Emotional View of the Illegal Immigration
10 July 2015 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

The seventeen year-old Iraqi-Kurdish Bilal (Firat Ayverdi) has crossed the Middle East and Europe trying to reach England to meet his girlfriend Mina (Derya Ayverdi) that lives with her family. However he is caught in Calais, France, and sent to a refugee camp. Meanwhile the swimming coach Simon Calmat (Vincent Lindon) is divorcing his wife Marion Calmat (Audrey Dana) and he meets Bilal that wants to have swimming classes with him. Soon Simon learns that Bilal wants to cross the English Channel to be with Mina and the love of Bilal affects him. Simon befriends the teenager and decides to help him. But France penalizes those who help illegal immigrants and a neighbor denounces Simon to the authorities.

"Welcome" is a French film with an emotional view of the illegal immigration, one of the greatest social problems of the century. We see on the news Mexican, Cuban and South American refugees trying to immigrate to the USA; Middle East and African refugee trying to immigrate to Europe; African, Central American mainly from Haiti and South American refugees coming to Brazil. In common, all these people expect to have a better life in the new country. But most of them do not have professional qualification and increase the legion of unemployed or subemployed and illegal workers in the new country.

The director Philippe Lioret brings a different and romantic approach to this problem, with a love story entwined with the sympathetic gesture of solidarity of a man that is needy since he is divorcing his beloved wife and is punished by the French laws for helping the immigrant. The beautiful story is heartbreaking; the performances are top-notch; and this movie introduced a debate in France about illegal immigration. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Bem-Vindo" ("Welcome")


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