Rent The Son (2002)

3.8 of 5 from 108 ratings
1h 41min
Rent The Son (aka Le Fils) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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In their first film since the Palme d'Or winning 'Rosetta', brothers Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne present a subtle and disquieting study of a man whose life has been devastated by tragedy. Olivier Gourmet won the Best Actor Award at Cannes for his masterfully understated portrayal of a carpenter who teaches teenagers at a rehabilitation school. He is disturbed by the arrival of a new student, Francis (Morgan Marinne), and he struggles to maintain a professional distance in the boy's presence. An ambiguous relationship develops between the two until the eventual revelation of a terrible secret from the past that binds them together.
Utilising their trademark pared-down visual aesthetic to great effect, the Dardennes have crafted a riveting, strikingly powerful film of profound emotional and moral complexity.
, , Isabella Soupart, Nassim Hassaïni, Kevin Leroy, Félicien Pitsaer, Rémy Renaud, , Fabian Marnette, , Stephan Barbason, David Manna, Abdellah Amarjouf, Jimmy Deloof, , Dimitri Legros, , Colette Hobsig, Anne Dortu, Sandro Scariano
Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Le Fils
Artificial Eye Film Company Ltd.
France, Drama

2002 Cannes Best Actor

Release Date:
Run Time:
101 minutes
French, Italian
Dutch, English, Italian
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.78:1 / 16:9
  • Interviews with directors Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne and star Oliver Gourmet
  • Stills gallery
  • Filmographies
  • Theatrical trailers
  • Interactive menus
  • Scene selection
Disc 1:
This disc includes the main feature
Disc 2:
This disc includes special features.

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Reviews (2) of The Son

Different! - The Son review by CB

Spoiler Alert

Saw write-ups about this film, and they were mostly right.

We do see more of the back of the carpenters head than the front. There is limited conversation..the overall feel of the film is dour.


I enjoyed it..the story is gripping enough and the two main actors are impressive.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

Close up to tension. - The Son review by RhysH

Spoiler Alert

The tension throughout the film is palpable but there is no histrionic acting and no musical score to telegraph what you should feel. The story is strong and is revealed bit by bit, adding to the rising tension.

The film is largely shot with hand-held cameras following the main character, Olivier played by Olivier Gourmet. The world is seen not from the point of view of Olivier but us as stalker looking over his shoulder and observing every move and facial tic. This gives the film an air of intimacy verging on voyeurism. Most of the film is shot in this way so that, at times, it becomes rather claustrophobic and one longs for wider shots to put the world of Olivier in perspective.

Olivier Gourmet won the 2002 best actor award at Cannes and deservedly so. It is a performance of slow burning intensity, always on the verge of boiling over but the lid is firmly on.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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