Director: Laurent Cantet, France 2008, 128 min.
Based on the book by François Bégaudeau, who plays himself, the movie documents a teacher challenging his class to an atmosphere of respect and motivation for education in Paris' multicultural 20th arrondisment. All teenage students are lay actors from a real class. And as François puts challenges to the students, so do they on him.
Director: Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche, France 2008, 93 min.
The owner of a pallet producing factory in the suburbs of Paris, Mao, aims to build a mosque for his muslim employees. What he does not recognize is that muslim is not muslim – and cultural and religious differences between Arabs and Black Africans even appear to end up in violent disputes.
Director: Mehdi Charef, France 1985, 110 min.
Based on the novel of the same name, the film deals with the life of two friends living in the banlieus of Paris. One of the first films dealing with young migrants trying to develop a life facing intolerance and prejudices. Even though more than 20 years old, with current events in France the films remains up to date.
Director: Mathieu Kassovitz, France 1995, 95 min.
The film follows three young men and their time spent in the French suburban "ghetto" over a span of twenty-four hours. Vinz, a Jew, Saïd, an Arab, and Hubert, a black boxer, have grown up in these French suburbs where high levels of diversity coupled with the racist and oppressive police force have raised tensions to a critical breaking point. During the riots that took place a night before, a police officer lost his handgun in the ensuing madness, only to leave it for Vinz to find. Now, with a newfound means to gain the respect he deserves, Vinz vows to kill a cop if his friend Abdel dies in the hospital due to the beating he received while in police custody. The film refers to events in 1995, when a young Zarians was shot dead by police officers during a questioning. Original video scenes are integrated into the film at the beginning.
Director: Victor Vroegindeweij, Netherlands 2007, 20 min.
11 year old Chanaika, who lives with her mother in the colourful Afrikaaner neighbourhood of Rotterdam, wants to perform in an annual summer carnival with her best friends. We follow this eloquent young lady during dance classes and while trying on clothes for the parade with her pals. Chainaika’s life seems cheerful, but she has not had an easy ride. Recently, she personally kicked her father out of the house because he hit her mother. While Chanaika tries to forget what happened, she keeps encountering new setbacks: her mother does not have time to come and watch, dance class is cancelled and the dresses for the parade are still not ready. But she refuses to give up.
Director: Ursula Biemann, Switzerland 2006/2007, 50 min., in French with English subtitles
Five selected chapters of a video project on migration structures from West Africa to Europe via the Maghreb. In a non-linear narrative style the project shows not only the conditions of transport but also the infrastructure of security control, and the retention camps along the way. Interviews imply backgrounds of the emergence and development of these structures.
Director: Smita Bhide, United Kingdom 2008, 85 min.
Mohan dreams of escape: from his unhappy marriage, his overbearing family, his unexciting prospects. He finds it by falling into an affair with the pretty young nurse looking after his cantankerous bed-ridden Auntie Kamla. At first the relationships feels like the answer to his prayers, but there are secrets to come out and before long he's on a road to disaster, his every step dogged by the looming menace of the Blue Tower waiting for him round every corner. t's not a 'corner-shop comedy' or a Bollywood pastiche but something new in British-Asian cinema, a full-blooded story of illicit passion and desperate hope which presents a unique and cinematic portrait of multicultural Britain.