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Directed by Eric Barbier

France 2017 131 mins. In French, Polish, English, Spanish with English subtitles

“Nominated for five César Awards, Promise at Dawn is the sweeping adaptation of French novelist Romain Gary’s beloved memoir of exotic globetrotting and an impassioned mother-son bond. Spanning over 20 years in the celebrated writer and diplomat’s extraordinary life, this lavish epic follows Gary (Pierre Niney) from childhood poverty in Poland, to his education in south France and exploits as a WWII aviator. This mélange of rich vignettes is seen through the prism of a problematic relationship with his eccentric, domineering mother Nina (Charlotte Gainsbourg in a stunning turn), who pushes beleaguered Gary to fulfill his potential. While her overwhelming love drives his ambition and is instrumental to his fame, his constant need for her approval proves a suffocating burden. Sparkling with meticulous cinematography and production design, this breathtaking saga contemplates the complex emotional truths of a parent’s self-sacrifice and impossible dreams for a child.”—Atlanta Jewish Film Festival.