*This is A French film that has been dubbed to English. The original title is Entre les murs.
This film was nominated for a 2009 US Academy Award (Oscar) in the category “Best Foreign Language Film of the Year” and it won a Golden Palm Award at the Cannes Film Festival (the first French film to win the Golden Palm at Cannes in 21 years!)
Teacher François Marin and his colleagues toil for another school year teaching a class of bubbly and street-smart adolescent kids at a racially mixed inner city high school in Paris. Marin's class this year of fourteen and fifteen year-olds is no different than previous years, although the names and faces have changed. Marin tries to get through to his students, sometimes with success and sometimes resulting in utter failure.
Part of the magic of ‘The Class’ is that it doesn't feel like a movie, but like something real, tangible - a slice of life, if you may. To a casual film goer, this movie may resemble a live recording of a high-school class of boys and girls with a teacher probing the minds of his students, made up of different backgrounds, races, religions and representing various continents. There are tense moments, hilarious repartees, behind the scene meetings of teachers evaluating students, parent teacher meetings and even stocktaking of a "year gone by" in the school. The film's content may disappoint viewers looking for conventional action, sex or heavy intrigue. Yet the acting and screenplay urge the viewer to zoom-out of his/her mind from the events taking place within the confines of the four walls of the classroom to beyond the school, and even beyond France - as the ethnic tensions, the psychological warfare and the social criticism are equally likely to take place in the wider outside world. That is the beguiling aspect of this film.