Olivier is a good teacher of carpentry, but a touch gruff; even so, when he refuses to accept young Francis into his workshop, that doesn’t explain why he takes to following the boy, as if he were spying on him. Might it have something to do with his own dead son, as his estranged wife insists?
One strength of the Dardennes’ follow-up to Rosetta, winner of the Cannes Palme d’Or, is that, once again, they ask us to discover certain crucial facts for ourselves: by the time we’re faced with questions of ethical and spiritual import, we’ve done enough groundwork to assess the evidence properly. Wisely, the camera stays close to Olivier, with the result that, notwithstanding his subtle understatement and a relatively taciturn script, we’re privy to his every fleeting thought and nagging emotion. Never manipulative or sensationalist, the film is none the less deeply moving. – Time Out
Cannes 2002: Prize of the Ecumenical Jury – Special Mention, Nominated for the Palm D’Or: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne
Olivier Gourmet received the Best Actor Award at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival for his portrayal of the tormented Olivier.
Subtitles:english, dutch, italian (also for the extras)