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Plot, Details & Awards

The First Man

Not Yet Rated 100min.
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Plot & Details

A man whose life has been informed by two cultures is caught in between as they go to war in this drama from filmmaker Gianni Amelio. Jacques Cormery (Jacques Gamblin) is a middle-aged novelist who has spent most of his life in France, but was born in Algeria and spent his childhood there with his mother (Catherine Sola) and grandmother (Ulla Baugue). Grandmother was the uncontested ruler of the household and in 1924, as he entered his teens, Jacques was expected to quit school and go to work, but his teacher Mr. Bernard (Denis Podalydes) recognized his talent and arranged for him to attend a high school where he could study writing despite his family's misgivings. Jacques also struck up a friendship with an Arabic student (Djamel Said) that would have a powerful impact on his attitudes about race. Years later, in 1957, Jacques returns to Algeria to visit his mother as the nation is rebelling against French rule, leading to a tremendous anger and consternation in Europe. As Jacques finds himself caught his French heritage and Algerian education, he is reunited with his old friend (Abdelkarim Benhabboucha) and is enlisted to help with the case of his son (Hachemi Abdelmalek), an activist who has been sentenced to death for his ties to the revolution. Le Premier Homme (aka The First Man) was adapted from the final, uncompleted novel by Albert Camus; the manuscript was rescued from the wrecked car in which Camus died in 1960, and was finally published in 1994.

Awards

Toronto International Film Festival

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
2011 Toronto International Film Festival Film Presented Nominated

Toronto International Film Festival

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
2011 Toronto International Film Festival Film Presented Nominated

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