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Belle & Sebastian
(„Belle et Sébastien“, Feature Film, France, 2013)


View gallery - Belle et Sébastien Content: Based on the beloved children’s book which introduced resourceful young Sebastian and the giant mountain sheepdog he tames and calls Belle, this heartwarming new feature film is set during WWII in the snowy Alps of occupied France, on the border of Switzerland. Sebastian, lonely and dreaming of the day his mother will return from America for him, befriends “the beast” the local farmers are convinced is killing their sheep – an enormous yet gentle sheepdog who quickly becomes the boy’s best friend and protector. With Nazis in the village rooting out the resistance fighters helping Jewish refugees cross the border, Belle and Sebastian’s loyalty – to each other and the village that’s embraced them both – will be put to the test. (Source: frenchfilmfestival.us)

View excerpt:


Cast: Félix Bossuet, Tchéky Karyo, Margaux Chatelier, Andreas Pietschmann, Dimitri Storoge, Urbain Cancelier, Mehdi El Glaoui u.a.
Directed by: Nicolas Vanier
Writing Credits: Nicolas Vanier, Juliette Sales, Fabien Suarez
Cinematography by: Eric Guichard
Music by: Armand Amar
Costume Design by: Adélaïde Gosselin
Produced by: Radar Films , Epithète Films, Gaumont, Matthieu Warter, Clément Miserez, Frédéric Brillon, Gilles Legrand


Reviews/Media

Andreas Pietschmann about what the audience can expect:


...Director Nicolas Vanier has performed a small miracle. This tale of a boy and a dog in the Alps during the German occupation is fabulous to look at, enriched by memorable performances from Felix Bossuet as the boy and Tcheky Karyo as his grand-dad. The film succeeds in transposing its overt sentimentality into an exciting narrative. (Angus Wolfe Murray,“Eye for Film") When you see the keyart images of a young boy with a beautiful white dog at his side, you could be forgiven for thinking this is a lightweight family adventure. The elements of Nicolas Vanier's enchanting film however, are far richer and more meaningful, with its themes of belonging, nurturing and heroism in war-torn Europe. Based on characters from a French TV series in the late 60s created by Cecile Aubry, the simplicity of the screenplay allows the complexity of all the elements to evolve naturally, delivering a wonderful, uplifting experience in which our faith in mankind is restored. Of course, the winning combination of boy and dog provides its own charm and the film’s heart in this multi-layered tale set in the stunning French Alps….

…Belle and Sebastian is a charming story and one with scale. It's a hero's journey - the hero is a little boy with the face of angel. His helper is a long-haired white dog with a pensive look who wears a badge of loyalty. Their journey together is inspiring. You may need a tissue. (Louise Keller, "Urban Cine File",Australia)

 
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