The Class (Entre les murs)

Shot tight like a documentary, rarely straying outside the classroom, Laurent Cantet’s Oscar-nominated The Class straddles a fine line between reality and fiction. Former teacher François Bégaudeau, who also wrote the screenplay and the book upon which this fantastic film is based, plays François Marin, a jocular high school teacher in a working-class Parisian neighbourhood. His students, an overwhelming mix of ethnicities and childhood experiences, are non-actors as well, and it's real anger that spills over their lessons on verb conjugations. Hollywood films about inner-city schools generally fall prey to the Dangerous Minds’ teacher-as-saviour syndrome. But in one compelling scene when Marin probes into the life of a student whose behaviour has changed over the summer, there’s a quiet, mutual acknowledgment of their relationship’s inherent limitations.

Credits

Director:

  • Laurent Cantet

Cast:

  • François Bégaudeau
  • Nassim Amrabt
  • Laura Baquela
  • Cherif Bounaïdja Rachedi
  • Juliette Demaille
  • Dalla Doucouré
  • Arthur Fogel
  • Damien Gomes
  • Louise Grinberg
  • Qifei Huang

Writer:

  • François Bégaudeau

Producer:

  • Caroline Benjo

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