A Season in France
The delightful sojourn that the title promises could not be further from reality for Abbas (Eriq Ebouaney), a refugee from war-torn Central African Republic living without papers in France. An academic in Bangui, in Paris he works menial jobs to support two children. For a while they live in relative happiness in a borrowed apartment on borrowed time, enjoying the friendship of Abbas's coworker and sometime lover (the marvelous Sandrine Bonnaire). But the Asylum Court knows nothing of love and family, nothing, finally, of Abbas. At the same time Abbas's brother experiences a disturbing act of anti-immigrant vandalism that sends this proud man into a tailspin. Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, a Chadian director who lives in France, has created an absorbing, intimate portrait of undocumented humans that will stay with you long after the characters disappear to who knows where.