This film, directed by Dardenne brothers, began to be displayed in our country in December. Depicting the life of a child, who lost his mother when he was twelve and left at an institution by his father, the film delivers many feelings together. At the moment it starts you think that you will watch the life of a child, at the beginning of puberty, with behavior problems, living at an institution. Then you quickly realize that the boy, who believes that he was left to the institution temporarily, hoping that his father would take him back, is the protagonist of the film. You understand the importance of a father for a child. You watch his detective-like efforts to reach his father as you hope he would find him. Then, you realize that finding his father is not a solution. You realize that having a father and having someone being a father for you are different things. You feel with the child the pain of being left behind, and more importantly the pain of being unwanted. You question yourself how you would cope with such a pain. Then a woman comes along. A woman giving an unexaggerated but accepting love, not rich and an angel like in the fairy tales but a woman who opens her arms to a child against all troubles… Contrary to those who even give up their own children when there is a problem, a resisting, ordinary woman who can give up her lover for a troubled child of whom she is a protective family. Ordinary but full of love…

When you think everything is going well, and just believing that the gap of the leaving parent is filled, you understand that this is not easy for a child. The child goes after the first father figure, who the child believes that he treats more acceptingly and specially towards him. You want to say “stop” as you watch, but you feel in your heart his need for being loved and wanted. You see and become frightened of what he can do for a person who he thinks would meet this need of his. You realize that if you leave something empty in a child’s life, he fills that place with something. Most times, the things that replace your place are not that good. Then you get a hope after seeing the success of a good working system together with love.

If you can find it, see it. See it for your relationship with your own children, see it to remember what social responsibility really is, and see it to understand that you can how simply achieve very important things. Even if none of these meant anything to you, you can just see it for the joy of feeling a plain, simple and unconditional love.

Original title: Le Gamin au vélo                   Duration: 87 min               Year: 2011
Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
Actors: Cécile de France, Thomas Doret, Jérémie Renier   

Bengi Semerci