USA Today - 06/22/2007 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "[W]armly accessible....Young Alain Cohen is very good as Berri's alter ego..."
This sensitive treatment of the Nazi Occupation of France during W.W.I.I. is based on the actual experiencs of French-Jewish director Claude Berri. Like many Parisian children, he was sent to live in relative seclusion with Gentile families in the French countryside until the war subsided. Alain Cohen stars as Claude, an 8-year-old Jewish boy who is sent to live with an elderly Catholic couple, the parents of his father's friends. Michel Simon is Pépé or "Gramps," an anti-Semetic old codger who doesn't realize that his new lodger is, in fact, Jewish. Despite their religious differences Claude and "Gramps" develop a deep bond, sharing in the day to day experiences of the war. Together, with Pepe's wife (Luce Fabiole) the unlikely threesome create a family until Claude is able to return to safety. Simon delivers a virtuoso performance as the old curmudgeon whose heart is warmed by the presence of the charming young boy. This nostalgic and heartwarming portrait of a child's experience of the French occupation, delves into the simple experiences of a city boy experiencing life in the French countryside, and is a distinctively more lighthearted vision than other French director's similar experiences. Like Louis Malle's autobiographical AU REVOIR LES ENFANTS, which portrays an equally moving, but much darker version of Jewish children forced to hide during the Nazi invasion of their homeland.
Race Relations |
Theatrical Release |
World War II