We talk to the cast and crew of Biutiful and The First Grader...
We atttend the UK premiere of Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Biutiful, where the director explains the film's key themes, and star performer Javier Bardem reveals how it felt to inhabit the role of Uxbal. Also featuring on day eleven is The First Grader, featuring Naomie Harris and Oliver Litondo.
Biutiful is a love story between a father and his children. This is the journey of Uxbal (Bardem), a conflicted man who struggles to reconcile fatherhood, love, spirituality, crime, guilt and mortality amidst the dangerous underworld of modern Barcelona. His livelihood is earned out of bounds, his sacrifices for his children know no bounds. As fate encircles him, a dim, redemptive road brightens, illuminating the inheritances bestowed from father to child, and the paternal guiding hand that navigates life's corridors, whether bright, bad - or biutiful.
The First Grader: In a remote mountain top primary school in the Kenyan bush, hundreds of children are jostling for a chance for the free education newly promised by the Kenyan government. One new applicant causes astonishment - he is Maruge (Litondo), an old Mau Mau veteran in his eighties, who is desperate to learn to read at this late stage of his life. He fought for the liberation of his country and now feels he must have the chance of an education so long denied. Moved by his passionate plea, head teacher Jane Obinchu (Harris), supports his struggle to gain admission and together they face fierce opposition from parents and officials who don’t want to waste a precious school place on such an old man.
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