From April 13 through 19, 2012.
This powerful and surprising film tells the poignant story of a Montreal middle school class shaken by the sudden death of their well-liked teacher and Balchir Lazahr, an Algerian immigrant who comes in to try to fill her place. With Quebecois director Philippe Falardeau’s simple delicate touch, the emotionally gripping film explores loss, exile, and the preciousness of life, and features exquisite performances from an amazing ensemble of child actors. Monsieur Lazhar opens on Friday, April 13 and will play seven days a week with screening times listed above. It is rated PG-13, and in French with English subtitles.
Monsieur Lazhar, which also swept the Genies (the Canadian Oscars) with 6 awards this year, is set in a typical Montreal suburb. It derives its power from the seething emotions it reveals roiling under the surface of the everyday, and the way it makes commonplace seem out of sorts. Lazhar the new substitute teacher finds himself at a school in crisis, and the film deftly parallels this story with that of his own as an immigrant in mysterious limbo. Cultural differences, secrets and families in crisis, loneliness and human kindness, are the clear themes of this film. But, its the slow drip of revelations about the children and Lazhar himself, inexorably leading to a stunning emotional and dramatic climax, that raise Monsieur Lazhar up to the level of a small masterpiece. The Toronto Star calls it, “A delightful and deeply moving story” and The Globe and Mail says, “It’s an exquisite, humanistic and subtly topical work of cinema art that manages to keep the intimate, revelatory sensibility of a one-man play intact while fleshing out the characters and creating a very realistic and richly detailed school community.”
An Opening Night Red Carpet Event for Monsieur Lazhar will take place on Friday, April 13; with screenings at 7:00 and 10:00 p.m. Director Falardeau will introduce both screenings via a live video-link connection. Between the two screenings, a reception will take place from 9:00 to 10:00 pm in the Cinema’s lobby and outdoor plaza for anyone who purchases a ticket for either show.
Special ticket prices for this event are $20 general admission and can be purchased in advance online at www.gablescinema.com, in-person at the Cinema box office during film screening hours, or on opening night. All other regular screening tickets are $11 and under and are only available in person at the box office.
Coral Gables Art Cinema
260 Aragon Avenue
Coral Gables, FL 33134