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France, 2003

Original music : Jean Mallet Production : Mille et Une Films

Programmed by Pascal Catheland





Jean-Benoît is seventeen years old and lives with his mother on the outskirts of Rouen. When he was twelve, his father brutally took his own life. The fragile teenager lives on a permanent knife-edge. Shot over three years, the film accompanies him on his many learning curves: his first steps in the world of men as an apprentice mechanic, his discovering kindness and love with Hélena, and his mother’s violence and abdication of responsibility. The filming process is an integral part of his long road to adulthood.

Tënk's opinion

First up, it has to be said that the relationship between Didier Nion, the filmmaker, and Jean-Benoît is fascinating! The 17-year-old’s story is loaded with repeated attempts at self-sabotage, yet the close bond between the two men is what injects this film with such intense compassion. The way Jean-Benoît looks at Didier is very disturbing: proof that the magic of documentary film lies in the tiny details, and in keeping the right, and most honest distance. 

Pascal Catheland

Item 1 of 4
Item 1 of 4

Item 1 of 4