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La Promesse
La Promesse
Actors: Jérémie Renier, Olivier Gourmet, Assita Ouedraogo, Jean-Michel Balthazar, Frédéric Bodson
Directors: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
NR     2002     1hr 30min

La Promesse draws on the considerable documentary acumen of its directors, Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne (Rosetta), to prove a revelation in narrative filmmaking. Shot on the outskirts of an industrial city in Belgium, the ...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Jérémie Renier, Olivier Gourmet, Assita Ouedraogo, Jean-Michel Balthazar, Frédéric Bodson
Directors: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Creators: Alain Marcoen, Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne, Marie-Hélène Dozo, Claude Waringo, Hassen Daldoul
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Family Life
Studio: New Yorker Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
DVD Release Date: 03/19/2002
Original Release Date: 05/16/1997
Theatrical Release Date: 05/16/1997
Release Year: 2002
Run Time: 1hr 30min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 8
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: French
Subtitles: English, Italian

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Movie Reviews

Flat-out my favorite film of the 90s
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you haven't seen this one, well... Its emotional impact on me was devastating. I saw it when it opened, and a friend and I, who are normally quite talkative after a good movie, walked at least two city blocks afterwards before either of us said a word. I compare it in style to "The Dreamlife of Angels" (hand-held cameras, naturalistic acting, a plot that unfolds gradually and builds to a harrowing finale, and no musical score) and in theme to, of all things, "The Apartment" (main character is waist-deep in wrongdoing but has a crisis of conscience that forces him to re-evaluate himself and his actions). Please find a copy somehow, or go ahead and spend the money here -- I don't want Amazon to get angry with me."
Best of 1998
Scott D. Allen | Santa Monica, California USA | 02/18/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is not a warm fuzzy picture by any means, but it is film for people who love people and appreciate the higher instincts of mankind that transcend nationality, race, gender, and age. Does one follow instinctual bonds to family, or honor and committment to a worthy promise.I absolutely loved this film...and so did my Parisian friends to whom I recommended it."
It is surprising how many different kinds of people respond
Larry from Brooklyn | Brooklyn | 01/20/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"We played La Promesse for our film society on a dark and snowy night. The response was sensational. Thinking people really seem to like this film; perhaps the straight-forward, no comments narrative allows us viewers to form our own opinions. This is a tough subject, told in a hard style, but it has the redemptive punch of the most hopeful Bressons (think Pickpocket or Women of the Boulogne Woods). The performance by Jeremie Renier is up there with anything Roddy McDowell did as a young actor; Olivier Gourmet is terrific in the ambiguity he brings to his role as the boy's father. In a very quiet and non-preachy way, this film talks to the future of Europe, the question of whether morality matters in a free market world, and the ties that family arouses in most of us. This is a great movie that sounds like it will be a drag. If you like this, look at Rosetta; you have probably already seen L'Enfant. If you're not a foreign language film buff, give it a try if you like Paul Shraeder at his most hopeful (American Gigolo; Light Sleeper) or John Boorman at his most idealistic (Beyond Rangoon; Emerald Forest). This will not disappoint you."