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It All Starts Today

Director:Bertrand Tavernier
Writers:Dominique Sampiero, Bernard and Tiffany Tavernier
Independent Artists Group; NR; 117 minutes
Cast:Philippe Torreton, Maria Pitarresi, Nadia Kaci

It All Starts Today sounds like a rallying cry for personal responsibility or civic change. The reality couldn't be further from the truth, and closer to it. The film follows a schoolteacher named Daniel (Philippe Torreton) struggling in a North France town. The most prominent feature of this community is chronic unemployment. The many ways in which joblessness impacts children of the unemployed are depicted here with unflinching realism. Because of its explicitly political material and the diary-like chronicle of Daniel's travails, It All Starts Today has a documentary feel. Yet—unlike many documentaries—it lacks the propagandistic edge implied by its title. Director Bertrand Tavernier lets the story tell itself. Any lessons or morals develop of their own accord, as created by an able-bodied cast and provocative, realistic script.

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