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The Learner

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by Samuel Collardey

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Fifteen-year-old Mathieu lives with his worker mother, who is separated from an unreliable husband who is practically absent from the boy's life. Mathieu is a student in a farming institute and he goes to a farm in the High Doubs, in eastern France, to do his apprenticeship. Studies and work soon become interlinked via the relationship the boy develops with Paul, the old owner of the farm, who acts as his tutor and in whom he finds the paternal figure he has always needed. For Mathieu, the apprenticeship therefore turns out to be an opportunity to take a look at himself, the experiences of his own family and the dramas that, in each of our lives, govern our personal feelings and those towards our family.

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