It demonstrates without overreaching what an actual teacher can do to shape lives.
A counterintuitive film about a small schoolhouse in rural France, To Be and to Have gets its punch from simple scenes and conversations.
| Original Score: 3/4
To Be and to Have is a movie every teacher should see, and every parent, too.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
At times, it feels as stultifying as watching paint dry, without the recompense of sniffing fumes.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
Watchful viewers -- particularly those with fond memories of a favorite teacher -- will be deeply moved by this film.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Amounts to a rare gift and an opportunity to appreciate the end of an era.
Deep, honest and unforced.
A deceptively simple French film about teaching that keeps enlarging as you watch it, becoming beautiful and inspiring in a way most films never touch.
An unhurried model of nonfiction filmmaking and a vision of life at its most persuasively humanistic.
| Original Score: 4/5
To Be and To Have works in the grandest tradition of documentary filmmaking -- it keeps company with a small, specific place going about its business, and from it parses the whole world.
| Original Score: 4/4
Contains some of the most stirring footage I have ever seen on the act and art of teaching children.
This heart-wrenching documentary about a French village schoolteacher at work offers the comedy and pathos of great drama and the visual magnificence of painting.
Exhibiting the same sort of patience as his sensible hero, Philibert has created an extraordinarily humane portrait of a partnership between one adult and his very fortunate charges.
So superb, so graceful, so strong -- another beauty in this year of good documentaries -- that I do believe it will influence career choices, sending inspired viewers to study pedagogy, or cinematography.
| Original Score: A
To Be and to Have feels like a deep, sweet pull of spring water.
One of the year's most engaging films.
The film is as tiny as an Altoid and as curiously strong.
The magical dynamic we witness, of recitations and math problems and disciplinary chats and vocabulary drills, all of it performed with exacting sympathy and focus, is genuine to the touch.
In a way, the film feels like a breath of fresh air, but only to those that allow it in.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
At once a testament to the divine calling of education and a demonstration of the painstaking process of imparting knowledge.
| Original Score: 3/5
A film that is a portrait of grace in an imperfect world.
As quiet, patient and tenacious as Mr. Lopez himself, who approaches his difficult, endless work with remarkable serenity and discipline.
| Original Score: 3.5/5