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Etre et Avoir

Arriving against the backdrop of British reports of missing monies and classroom crises, Philibert’s charming, award-festooned documentary of a single-classroom school in rural Auvergne offers a refreshing view. There, schoolmaster Georges Lopes is in charge of pupils ranging from nursery-age to final-year of primary education, all from the same village. ‘Fly-on-the-wall’, the film is at once intimate and deceptively simple, recording the development of the students – both personally and academically – and the interaction between the ages and between teacher and pupils, at the same time offering a portrait of a small French farming community.