Au revoir les enfants 1987

Au revoir les enfants 1987

Au revoir les enfants 1987

Au revoir les enfants 1987
1h 44min | Biography, Drama, War | 7 October 1987 (France)

Storyline

A French boarding school run by priests seems to be a haven from World War II until a new student arrives. He becomes the roommate of the top student in his class. Rivals at first, the roommates form a bond and share a secret.

User review:

This is a masterpiece of cinema, a work of genius by one of the greatest directors, Louis Malle. He does everything with the barest touch, just the slightest emphasis, without rancor or any loading of the deck. He understates and plays fair always. He has complete control of his story and of the audience. He knows what they believe and what they expect. He respects that, but he doesn’t cater, and he is very gentle about leading us to the conclusion. He makes it beautiful although it is horrible.

Gaspard Manesse as Julien and Raphael Fejto as Jean are unforgettable and a reminder that in film it’s important to have a good cast. Yet, I suspect Malle could have made geniuses of any number of talented young boys in their parts. This is your Catholic boys school coming of age film without lecherous priests or the brutality of children; that is, no more than is necessary, just what is real and seen in perspective, the context being the Nazi occupation of France in 1944. It is amazing how Malle manages to show the bestiality and brain dead stupidity of the Nazis by presenting them at their most gentle. If one can damn by faint praise, one can destroy by contrast. Compared to what is human and natural we see the Nazis, as their pretentious Reich is falling apart, chasing after children, obsessed with psychotic racist delusions. Through the objective eyes of the children we see the evil. Malle need only let the facts speak for themselves.

I think artists working in any medium would benefit from study of this film.

What it says to us is be honest, be fair, keep it simple, but not too simple. Use not a brush stroke more than necessary, and pay attention to every detail, especially the small ones. But while we can learn from and appreciate, it takes genius to pull it off. It can’t be done by connecting the dots.

I am struck by a little irony on the jacket of the video. It has an early Siskel and Ebert quote: ‘One of the year’s best films.’ That’s a little embarrassing unless the year is a hundred years long.

Incidentally, the sublime, beautiful and wondrously talented Irène Jacob made her debut here in a small part as a piano teacher.

Director: Louis Malle
Writer: Louis Malle (scenario)
Stars: Gaspard Manesse, Raphael Fejtö, Francine Racette
Country: France | West Germany | Italy
Language: French | German | English | Greek | Latin
Release Date: 12 February 1988 (USA)
Also Known As: Au Revoir les Enfants
Filming Locations: Institution Sainte-Croix, Provins, Seine-et-Marne, France

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0092593/

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Format : MPEG-4
Format profile : Base Media
Codec ID : isom (isom/iso2/avc1/mp41)
File size : 1.75 GiB
Duration : 1 h 45 min
Overall bit rate : 2 382 kb/s

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English subtitle

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