Jij bent Mijn Vriend
Netherlands, 2018, 77’, Color
Dutch with Turkish and English subtitles
Directors: Petra Lataster-Czisch, Peter Lataster
Cinematography: Peter Lataster
Editing: Mario Steenbergen
Producer: Peter Lataster
The first day at a new school is always nerve-racking, and all the more so for six-year-old Branche. He has come with his parents from Macedonia to the Netherlands, he doesn’t know anyone at the school, and nobody understands Macedonian. Branche is in a special class for children who are still learning Dutch—the same class that previously featured in the film Miss Kiet’s Children. In You Are My Friend, Petra and Peter Lataster again deliver a heartwarming film in their characteristic observational style, with the patient camera always at the child’s eye level. This results in touching scenes as Branche and his classmates experiment with expressing their affection for each other and try to work out how they can become friends. A couple of times, Branche has to start all over again, for example when he moves to a new Dutch class. In the year that follows, we watch him grow up and gain self-confidence in his friendships.