The Class

2008 | Drama | 128 minutes | French with English subtitles


In an immigrant, working-class Parisian neighborhood, Francois Marin, a young teacher, begins the year with twenty-five teenage students in his class. The students have different backgrounds, are foreign-born, and hard to discipline. Marin begins teaching his students to value and respect each other. While trying to learn French the students become frustrated and have disciplinary problems. One student, Souleymane, is expelled and faces possible deportation to Mali. Despite what seemed at first insurmountable obstacles, Marin had many successes with his students his first year: Carl was inspired by chemistry, Khoumba gravitated to music, and Esmeralda began reading Plato’s Republic and was gripped by the character Socrates. Marin also learned something about himself: the importance of being patient and resourceful. 

Francois Bégaudeau (Francois Marin) / Franck Keita (Soulemane) / Carl Nanor (Carl) / Esmeralda Ouertani (Esmeralda) / Rachel Régulier (Khoumba)
Why Stream This Film?
With insight and humor, Laurent Cantet wonderfully analyzes a multicultural Parisian population through the eyes of a young teacher and his impressionable students.
  • Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 95%
  • Metacritic Score: 92
  • Academy Awards: Nominated, Best Foreign Language Film
  • Cannes Film Festival: Winner, Palme d’Or
  • César Awards: Winner, Best Film, Best Adapted Screenplay (Laurent Cantet)
The film THE CLASS is bursting with life, energy, fears, frustrations and the quick laughter of a classroom hungry for relief.
Roger Ebert

Director Laurent Cantet has done that rarest of things in movies about children: He has allowed them to talk.
Manohla Dargis

The New York Times

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