The Bélier Family

The Bélier Family

(La famille Bélier)
(2014)

This Christmas, love is all you need.

French box office hit comedy about Paula (Louane Emera), a teen girl and the sole member of her family who isn't deaf. When she joins the school choir to spend time with the new boy in town, Paula discovers a previously unknown talent as a singer. But since she's an indispensable interpreter for the rest of her family, Paula's decision to take part in a major singing competition will come at a price for her parents and siblings...

Flicks Review

This French dramedy proved a sleeper hit at the French box office last Christmas, and its ceaseless watchability lives up to that audience-driven success. It's difficult to imagine an English-language film approaching the subject of a mostly deaf family with such a frank, sometimes politically incorrect, directness, but it speaks principally to this film's dedication to breaking down the barriers between mainstream cinema and the idea of deafness.... More

It may occasionally result in some humour that maybe doesn't translate as well as it could, but it's clear that the movie's heart is in the right place. The focus is ultimately on the family's one hearing member, however, a typical teenager who carries a lot more on her shoulders than her peers, portrayed with incandecent star quality by a debuting Louane Emera. It is through her that the audience has a relationship with the rest of her family, (all of whom are deaf/mute), and she proves an empathetic and effective audience surrogate.

After all that investment, watching the character discover her own musical talent is a superlative joy. Although prominent French actors Karin Viard and François Damiens both give captivating performances as her parents, it is Emera the brings The Bélier Family most of its power. You won't find a more winning alternative to Christmas blockbuster bombast.Hide


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Listen the soundtrack. It's golden.


The Press Reviews

93% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • [Viard and Damiens] manage to project a lot of warmth despite the fact both have no spoken dialogue and their characters tend to be extremely direct. Full Review

  • The beauty of the otherwise formulaic La Famille Belier is the way this affable crowdpleaser manages to twist its overplayed setup. Full Review

  • Emera is indeed a winning presence, and it would take a hard heart not to be moved by her rendition of Michel Sardou's Je Vole... Full Review

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