Promise, The (La Promesse)

An impressively tough, raw realist drama, set in and around the drabber areas of Liège, in which a 15-year-old comes into conflict with his single parent father after a tragedy forces the boy to confront the moral implications of the pair's exploitative business in smuggling and housing illegal immigrants. Having made a promise to a dying African that he'll look after his wife and kid, young Igor is torn between filial duty and growing affection for his impoverished 'charges', between fear of his dad's bouts of drunken violence and his desire to keep his word. The performances are superb, the interplay between father and son extraordinarily well observed, and the whole thing at once wholly unsentimental and deeply moving.

Release details

Rated: 15
Duration: 93 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Screenwriter: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Cast: Jérémie Renier
Olivier Gourmet
Assita Ouedraogo
Rasmané Ouedraogo
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