This film is about an African doctor named Seyolo Zantoko, who is of Congolese decent but studied in France. He has yet to receive his French citizenship, so he takes a job as a doctor in a rural city north of Paris. His whole family moves up there, which proves to be difficult for all of them, because they are the only Africans in an otherwise Caucasian village. Seyolo’s desire to live in France is fueled by the belief that his children will get a better education, and that he will eventually receive French citizenship. His family is then forced to adapt in this village, and Seyolo must work to actually make his clinic successful, especially because the townspeople don’t trust him.
I believe that this film beautifully illustrates racism through an African family’s attempt to acclimate in a village originally unaccepting of their culture and originality. It shows that though people may come from different backgrounds, they can still be just as successful- this concept is illustrated through Seyolo’s success of becoming a doctor in rural France, as well as his daughter’s success of becoming a well-respected and well- liked soccer player in the area. It was very interesting to see this play out in rural France. It was quite different from what can be seen and what was seen in the past in the United States. Especially in regards to racism, I believe that Americans were much less welcoming when it came to accepting an African into their society. I was surprised to see these French citizens be generally welcoming to Seyolo and his family, and warm up to them fairly quickly. I also very much enjoyed seeing the methods through which Africans displayed their culture in the film, such as through the way they sang gospel music at church. This was also quite different from what the native French citizens did, as they would sing in a much quieter and less energetic way. I believe that this film beautifully encompassed a mixture of two different cultures, as well as did a great job of promoting acceptance of those different from oneself.
I agree that it does compare in a way to what was going on in American in the 60s. It was a good way of seeing a different perspective on the issue.
I like your comment on how this movie doesn't just show that the French can accept the Congolese, but the Congolese can be successful in France.
You offered an awesome explanation of the film and the incorporation of two cultures. I also thought that was an important aspect.
Bienvenue a Marly-Gomont, is about an African doctor and his family coming to France and trying to fit into the small town. The movie is based on a true story and shows the struggle the family went through just to be accepted into the small northern village. This film showed how tough it was for Seyolo to get the people to trust him and how lots of people don’t like change. I think one of the big messages this film was trying to portray is that change is good. When the people of the village accepted the family, ot benefited the village for the better. The soccer team was winning, people were happier and healthier; they just had to get past the color of their skin.
In my mind I thought France had always been a very accepting country no matter the race or religion. I saw France as a diverse nation without any racism and this film should me otherwise. Maybe around this time was when the races integrated and the French became more understanding, or maybe I just don’t know France all that well.
I did really love this movie, I thought it was a good mix of humor and feelings. It had a really good storyline and I liked it even more since it was based off a true story. The most surprising thing for me is that they let his daughter play on the older men’s soccer team. I would 100% recommend this movie to anyone.
I like the perspective you took, it definitely did show that change was good. I also think that, not giving up is another part of the movies argument.
I was also surprised that he allowed his daughter to play on the team! I think it wrapped up the theme of change nicely!
The African Doctor focused on a family from Africa, moving to the French speaking community and trying to fit in. Dr. Zantoko’s family is not happy with the move and he seems to be pushing his African heritage aside.
The argument being portrayed through the film, could be seen as never give up just because things get hard. Even though mostly everyone hated the Zantoko family because they were different, Seyolo did not let it affect him and he fought through it. Through his persistence he eventually gained the trust of the villagers and was able to fulfill his goal.
I know that we previously mentioned that the French are very structured and not very keen to change, if I am not wrong. Through this film it can be seen how reluctant the people were to have African people take care of them, let alone live with them. Seeing as the film was made in 2016 it is interesting to see that the reluctance to change is still prevalent but, overall it is very spot on to what we have heard about the French culture.
I enjoyed the film, I think it was a very interesting perspective to seen on their culture. Also, it was good to see the rural town life rather than the all talked about Paris. I learned and was surprised that even in today’s time, there can still be unwillingness to incorporate or learn about other cultures. I would like to learn more on how the French view other ethnicities as well, and if they incorporate others differently into their culture. I would recommend this film highly to anyone because it really ties into American life as well, many immigrant will have similar experiences to that of the Zantoko’s.
I agree with you when I thought that Dr. Zantoko was pushing aside his heritage just to get the French to accept him. What helped him a lot was his family coming and showing the village how cool the Congolese culture is.
This film depicts the life struggles of a family from Africa that moves to France while struggling to maintain their African heritage. Dr. Zantoko had his family have a tough time adjusting to the caucasian town in a rural city north of Paris. He hopes that this move will better his children’s education and that he will eventually receive his french citizenship. This move appeared extremely difficult for Dr. Zantoko because he was forced to earn people’s trust through his work. He also learned how difficult change can be for some people. I think this leads into the theme of the film which is change, and that change can be a good thing. Dr. Zantoko’s persistence helped him win over the people of the town.
This film nicely covered the topic of racism in France, and portrayed a side of France that is not always displayed. I liked that I got to see a different cultural aspect of France and learn aspects of the Congolese culture as well. I was also able to compare the French’s acceptance to that of Americans and found that the French are more welcoming to others in a faster time period. I enjoyed the film and the different aspects and cultures it touched on.
I agree I believe this movie did a great job in showing a different side of France and part of the past we didn't know of outside of the history of the U.S.
This film is about an African doctor who although is originally from Zaire studied in France. Following his studies he receives two job offers one in being a personal doctor for the president of Zaire and the other as a local doctor for a rural town in northern France. He decides to take the offer of being a doctor for a rural town named Marly-Gomont and moves his wife and two kids with him. When they first arrive they receive a lot of whispers and side eyes from the town folk. This results in no patients for doctor Zantoko, hardships for his wife and kids, arguments between him and his wife, and many more obstacles. However through it all the doctor and his family start to find their place after Dr. Zantoko wins over the town. Just when things start to go right it all comes crashing down for the family when the doctor is arrested over immigration issues and is forced to shut down the clinic. When Sivi the doctors daughter becomes a star player on the towns football team the doctor uses it to his advantage to help the mayor get re-elected and his family to stay in Marly-Gomont.
I believe that the argument the director is making is that even though life may seem tough you can get through anything with the help of your family by your side. In this film France is different from what I thought it would be like in the 1970s. I thought that France would be a little more open to Africans especially by the 70s living in their town. But then again it is a really small town and they probably didn't get involved in the outside world around them. I would like to learn more about the doctor however I have found very little on him other than what is in the movie. I did find that his son wrote a song about the little town and his time growing up there which was really interesting. Even though I don't watch movies like this I would definitely recommend it to others!
Bienvenue à Marly-Gomont follows the story of the Congolese, French-trained doctor Seyolo Zantoko. After graduating from medical school, Seyolo rejects a job offer to work for his country’s president and instead accepts an offer to transplant with his family to the small French town of Marly-Gomont. Upon arriving to Marly-Gomont, the Zantokos promptly find that life in a small town is nothing like the life in Paris they had originally imagined. The arrival of the Zantoko family produces a wave of culture shock for the townspeople who appear to never have interacted with a person of color before, as well as for the family themselves as they adjust to small town life in a new country. Of the challenges the family faces, most them are a result of their race. Seyolo has trouble gaining the trust of the townspeople and getting them to come into his clinic; Anne feels isolated and ostracized; the children are bullied and unable to make friends with the local children. This film provides an insight into race relations in rural France during the 1970s. Through my studies, I have not encountered much information regarding race relations in France. While this film is only one example, I was able to relate what the film did provide to my understanding of race in America. To some point I was surprised at how the townspeople regarded the Zantoko family based on my knowledge of France’s historic involvement in the Caribbean and Africa. Despite the racism and accompanying difficulties faced by the family, each member slowly acclimates to their new surroundings and successfully becomes an important part of the town in their own way. This film illustrates the irrationality of racism, the hardships faced by African immigrants, and the value of hard work and perseverance.
I also agree with you in that I barely had any prior knowledge about race relations in France, so it was interesting to see how people interacted with Seyolo and his family in rural France.
Bienvenue a Marly-Gomont is a film about Seyolo Zantoko who was a fresh new doctor. It follows his struggles to fit into a very small rural village in France. However, he then turns out to be very well-respected.
The argument made in the film is that you should not give up on what you want to do in life based on what others think you should do. Zantoko had to face other people's opinions about him everyday but he preserved and did what he loved.
Before watching this film, I thought that France was more accepting especially due to the francophone areas in Africa. However, after watching this film, it made me second guess myself to think that racism is going to be anywhere in the world.
I enjoyed this film and enjoyed it even more when I found out that it was a true story. I think that more stories like this should be produced to the world for viewers to comprehend what is going on.
I also really enjoyed the fact that the movie was based on a true story! It made it much more interesting to watch.
This film is about a Congolese doctor that moves his family to a small town in France so that his children may have a better life. They are the only black people in town and are very much the ‘other’. They are slowly accepted as the residents begin to look past the color of their skin.
I enjoyed this film quite a bit. It was interesting to see racism portrayed in France and comparing it to the racism here. I thought the struggle was very similar to stories that are told about immigrants that came to America in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The themes of universality and the good of acceptance resonated a lot.