Rent Monsieur Lazhar (2011)

3.8 of 5 from 164 ratings
1h 31min
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After the tragic passing of their well-liked teacher a school class is left shaken and fragile. A new primary teacher is appointed, the mysterious and charming Bachir Lazhar who, as each day passes, earns the trust of the class and allows them to grieve. Lazhar's compassion has a huge impact on the most sensitive pupils, but unbeknown to them, he is also fighting his own personal battles that have left him emotionally vulnerable.
, , , , Vincent Millard, Seddik Benslimane, Louis-David Leblanc, Gabriel Verdier, Marianne Soucy-Lord, , , , , Daniel Gadouas, Francine Ruel, Sophie Sanscartier, , , Marie Charlebois,
Luc Déry, Kim McCraw
Philippe Falardeau, Evelyne de la Chenelière
Soda Pictures
Comedy, Drama
Release Date:
Run Time:
91 minutes
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1

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Reviews (6) of Monsieur Lazhar

Touching - Monsieur Lazhar review by Gail

Spoiler Alert

Sorrowful, endearing, meaningful, emotional and strikingly true and real. But with some charming upbeat moments too. I enjoyed it overall and would recommend for a sweet and soulful night in x

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

A Category 12 family film at the very highest level: even the sub-titles are family-friendly! - Monsieur Lazhar review by DW

Spoiler Alert

"Brilliant" is an understatement: watching alone, I was transfixed so I imagined the pleasure for a family-film-night involving grandparents, their children & their children's children. There's something for everyone is this lovely on-location film. The classroom scenes are slow & drawn-out with effective silences: other scenes are very much faster & shorter though significantly relevant to the central themes.

I saw the true-to-life story as a relative lull between two storms: a far-reaching tragedy preceded the film whilst the ending pointed towards more incoming storm clouds. It's another World Cinema film that has a make-your-own-mind-up type of ending that invariably sets me thinking. In my imaginary 3-generation family mentioned above, I bet each person would have their own idea of what happened next.

Call me cynical if you like but if this came from money-grabbing Hollywood I reckon there'd be at least one sequel then possibly a prequel. As it is, it's a stand-alone gem & I'm glad I found it (or vice versa).

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

an elegiac lyrical reflection on loss, guilt and reconciliation - Monsieur Lazhar review by tm

Spoiler Alert

I loved this gentle film which ambles through a few weeks in the life of a primary school in Canada, exploring loss, anger, grief, prejudice, fear, the price of secrecy but ultimately comes settles on the power of human kindness.

heart warming and believable

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

Monsieur Lazhar review by Melissa Orcine - Cinema Paradiso

A Quebecois middle school is shocked to its core when one of its beloved teachers is found hanging on a pipe inside a classroom. The suicide is then made more disturbing because two of her students saw the teacher hanged and dead. It’s a quick reality check in the opening scene of Canada’s ‘Monsieur Lazhar’, but death eerily looms in this film from start to finish.

The titular ‘Monsieur Lazhar’ is played by Algerian actor Mohamed Fellag, popularly known by his name Fellag the comic actor in France. Here he takes a dramatic turn and he knows what he’s doing, being the genteel newcomer who applies for the teaching job left by the one who committed suicide. As Lazhar, Fellag manifests a man who is eager to connect with his students but has restraint on opening up since he isn’t exactly what he says he is. Is Lazhar telling the truth about his credentials? Why migrate from to Canada at all? Can he turn these kids around and erase the tragedy from their young minds?

Written and directed by Philippe Falardeu, ‘Monsieur Lazhar’ has joined the ranks of films where teachers inspire their students to be the better versions of themselves and follow their dreams. But the film is much more simplistic than that; it’s about teacher-student relationships and how it impacts both parties’ lives forever. For Lazhar, he wants the students not to obsess over death, while the students want the assurance that everything’s going to be okay – if this won’t come from their own parents, at least from their teacher, someone whom they spend most of their days with, anyway. And yet the drama in ‘Monsieur Lazhar’ is not melodramatic and hysterical. Instead, the drama is in the quiet that Lazhar and his students practice in order to move on, let go, and live. Fellag as Lazhar is perfect while the kids who play his students are nuanced and natural, not annoying actor-types at all.

‘Monsieur Lazhar’ tugs at the heartstrings and for good reason. No wonder it was nominated for a Best Foreign Film Oscar in 2011.

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