Friday, March 17 - Thursday, March 23, 2023
US Premiere of New 4K Restoration!
Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne made their international breakthrough with this powerful feature, awarded best foreign film by the National Society of Film Critics. The brothers brought the unerring eye for detail and the compassion for those on society’s lowest rungs developed in their earlier documentary work to an absorbing drama about a teenager (Jérémie Renier) gradually coming to understand the implications of his father’s making a living through the exploitation of undocumented workers. Filmed in the Dardennes’ industrial hometown of Seraing, Belgium, La promesse is a brilliantly economical and observant tale of a boy’s troubled moral awakening.
“An impressively tough, raw realist drama, set in and around the drabber areas of Liège, in which a 15-year-old comes into conflict with his single parent father after a tragedy forces the boy to confront the moral implications of the pair’s exploitative business in smuggling and housing illegal immigrants. Having made a promise to a dying African that he’ll look after his wife and kid, young Igor is torn between filial duty and growing affection for his impoverished ‘charges’, between fear of his dad’s bouts of drunken violence and his desire to keep his word. The performances are superb, the interplay between father and son extraordinarily well observed, and the whole thing at once wholly unsentimental and deeply moving.” – Time Out (London)
Screening as part of “Brotherhood: The Films of Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne“
See more and save! Get a 3-ticket pack, good for any shows in the March 17-23 retrospective, for only $42– $30 for IFC Center members!
- Country Belgium
- Language French with English Subtitles
- Year 1996
- Running Time 93 minutes
- Distributor Janus
- Director Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne
- Cast Jérémie Renier, Olivier Gourmet, Assita Ouedraogo
IFC Center does not generally provide advisories about subject matter or potentially triggering content in films, as sensitivities vary from person to person. In addition to the synopses, trailers and other links on our website, further information about content and age-appropriateness for specific films can be found on Common Sense Media, IMDb and DoesTheDogDie.com as well as through general internet searches.