6.7/10
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Samba (2014)

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2:33 | Trailer

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Samba migrated to France ten years ago from Senegal, and has since been plugging away at various lowly jobs. Alice is a senior executive who has recently undergone a burn-out. Both struggle... See full summary »

Writers:

Éric Toledano (scenario), Olivier Nakache (scenario) | 3 more credits »
4 nominations. See more awards »

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Stars: Vincent Elbaz, Isabelle Carré, François-Xavier Demaison
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Omar Sy ... Samba Cissé
Charlotte Gainsbourg ... Alice
Tahar Rahim ... Walid dit Wilson
Izïa Higelin ... Manu
Issaka Sawadogo ... Jonas Karanoto
Hélène Vincent ... Marcelle
Youngar Fall Youngar Fall ... L'oncle Lamouna
Christiane Millet Christiane Millet ... Madeleine
Jacqueline Jehanneuf Jacqueline Jehanneuf ... Maggy
Liya Kebede ... Magali dite Gracieuse
Sabine Pakora Sabine Pakora ... Gracieuse - la gérante du salon
Clotilde Mollet Clotilde Mollet ... Josiane - de l'agence d'intérim
Boubacar Ndiaye Boubacar Ndiaye ... Un migrant à l'association
Oumar Makalou Oumar Makalou ... Un migrant à l'association
Roukiata Ouedraogo Roukiata Ouedraogo ... Un migrant à l'association
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Storyline

Samba migrated to France ten years ago from Senegal, and has since been plugging away at various lowly jobs. Alice is a senior executive who has recently undergone a burn-out. Both struggle to get out of their dead-end lives. Samba's willing to do whatever it takes to get working papers, while Alice tries to get her life back on track until fate draws them together. Written by Toronto International Film Festival

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes those with nothing have the most to lose.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Gaumont [France] | Official site

Country:

France

Release Date:

15 October 2014 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Самба See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$39,041, 31 July 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$149,805, 23 August 2015
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Samba is sitting in the Metro waiting for a train, behind him is a poster with the heading 'Pasolini Roma'. This is an advertisement for an exhibition that examined the works of writer and filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini and in particular, his interactions with Rome. The exhibition was not limited to his cinema work but also included poetry, politics, his commitment to city life, sex, and friendship. It was held in three cities - Barcelona, Paris and Berlin, with the Paris exhibition at the La Cinémathèque Française running form 16th October 2013 t0 26th January 2014. See more »

Quotes

Alice: Ni le début d'abus.
See more »

Crazy Credits

A continuation of the last scene showing Samba walking through Paris is seen behind the initial credits (till around one-third of the way through the credits). See more »


Soundtracks

Waiting in Vain
Written by Bob Marley
Performed by Bob Marley and The Wailers
From album "Exodus" (1977)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Funny bits were in the trailer, Samba (and Alice) goes nowhere, learns nothing
1 November 2014 | by vostfSee all my reviews

If this was the first I watched from Toledano/Nakache starring Omar Sy, I would say it has its moments but mostly displays immature story-writing/story-telling skills. Now this comes after the tremendously successful Intouchables, and I am left wondering what went wrong.

Samba is another adaptation, but unlike Intouchables you don't have powerful core dynamics. Samba is a nice boy, Alice is a nice girl and both are just thrown in the middle of a distressing world that is too harsh on them. They try to cope with it but they are basically passive characters so it really gets boring as the story piles up scenes that just drag along these fatalistic souls. No matter how gentle and touching they are: we get this point pretty early on.

Maybe Toledano/Nakache fell in love with the book Samba is based on and of course nobody would challenge them after Intouchables. This is what plagues talent most: self-doubt and sycophants. Apparently working as a team didn't preclude them from getting over with the Intouchables hangover (I guess they have families and couldn't step aside from the madness).

Samba is hardly an interesting story. The ordeal of undocumented aliens was surely a very interesting idea as a background for a real story, with characters that actually try and choose to change their lives. Unfortunately in Samba there is only this interesting background with gentle passive characters barely afloat.


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