Life is a Long Quiet River

Two babies are switched at birth. When the mistake is discovered 12 years later, it leads to complications in the lives of both families. One family is affluent, with dutiful and (apparently) contented children. The other family is poor, with rambunctious (even delinquent) children, often hungry, but with lots of laughter in the house.


When Katie meets Paco they fall in love. From this an extraordinary child is born; Ricky, who quickly develops into something wonderful and not so normal.

Le Havre

Marcel Marx, a former bohemian and struggling author, has given up his literary ambitions and relocated to the port city Le Havre. He leads a simple life based around his wife Arletty, his favourite bar and his not too profitable profession as a shoeshiner. As Arletty suddenly becomes seriously ill, Marcel’s path crosses with an underage illegal immigrant from Africa, who needs Marcel’s help to hide from the police.


Nick Gutlicht, a small-time crook from a working class background who makes a living in the illegal trade of valuable books is in debt and has to go underground. He happens to wind up at the elegant town house of well-known but now elderly philosopher Curt Ledig, who, in spite of his dementia and a pathological aversion to kitchens, is unwilling to move in with his daughter. Thus Nick is hired by the family to look after the old man. Curt can now work on the lecture nobody expects him to be able to give at an impending symposium, and Nick gets a first-rate hide-out. The partnership of convenience between these two individualists soon develops its own momentum. Curt sees in Nick a fascinating new research subject and makes him undergo an absurd therapy. Nick senses in Curt’s phenomenal library a unique opportunity to consolidate his finances. Mayhem of unforeseen proportions ensues. [Synopsis courtesy of Berlinale]