About this event:
Friday, May 31st at 7:00 pm
$6 for members/$8 for non-members
About the film:
“Extraordinary French documentary Swagger introduces eleven high school students from Claude Debussy college in Aulnay-sous-Bois, an underprivileged urban suburb of Paris. Directed by Olivier Babinet, who gives us a group of students each of whom has the usual teenage anxieties but who are also grappling with other layers of disquiet: a world that very often seems racist to them, a world in which the haves and the have-nots seem increasingly distant from each other. Asked whether they know any people of continental French descent, they are visibly amazed by the question. For them, it is abundantly clear that their school is not one that non-immigrant French citizens would attend.
From this starting point, Babinet proceeds to uncover the inner workings of his students. We learn about their lives, their concerns, their hopes and dreams. Some of what we hear is almost banal but other moments have a freshness, sometimes a charming naivety, which carries the film along so that our overall impression is one of hope and possibility. Swagger doesn’t ignore the social issues these students have to deal with; we see the drug dealer sleeping in his car, hear the warning cries at night passed from building to building when the police venture into the projects. However, Babinet chooses to focus on the students themselves and allows the audience to meet and get to know them. With great respect and tact, he draws out their thoughts, opinions, hopes, and dreams. A memorable group of individuals and a memorable film, you wonder during the closing credits where these youngsters are now and how adulthood, aspirations and the realities beyond the school gates might have shaped them.”