LA TRAVIATA, MY BROTHERS AND I
The music of Verdi inspires a young boy living in the tenements of a French seaside town to question if life might have more to offer than just the daily struggle to get by.
On the eve of summer vacation, 14-year-old Nour (Maël Rouin Berrandou) already knows how he’s spending the next few months: quitting school, working off his court-mandated community service, hanging at the beach, and getting a job to help earn the money needed to care for his bedridden mother. Then, one day, as he’s up a ladder painting the local community center, he hears it: an aria sung by Pavarotti. It’s the music his father once sang for his mother, the music Nour still plays for her today. Encouraged by young opera coach Sarah (Judith Chemla), Nour tentatively begins to explore his feelings for the music, something his brusque but loving brothers can’t understand. They don’t see any space in their lives for anything other than hard work and shady hustling. Unable to turn his back on his brothers but unwilling to abandon opera entirely, Nour searches to find a precarious harmony for himself. In his feature debut, French filmmaker Yohan Manca eschews Billy Elliot-like fantasies for a far more grounded and nuanced approach. Directing with naturalism that allows his cast to shine, Manca crafts a touching tale of a young boy discovering both the arts and a true sense of himself.
CAST: Maël Rouin Berrandou, Judith Chemla, Dali Benssalah, Sofian Khammes
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