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The Man Who Planted Trees

The story, narrated by the great actor Christopher Plummer, tells how a good and simple man with an ear for the language of the earth, makes a forest grow in what was a god-forsaken, waterless waste. Not far from a deserted hamlet, ruined by drought and buffeted by the winds, a shepherd lives alone with his sheep.  He is a taciturn man who matches the rhythm of his life to that of nature.  Some fifty years of age, he underwent  much  suffering  in  his  life,  and  chose  to  devote the  rest  of  it  to  this  patient  and  anonymous achievement. Putting to work his deep knowledge of nature, he wants to create a forest where everyone else saw only a hopeless  desert,  sowing  seeds  and  acorns,  one  by  one, with the  greatest  care.   Then,  as  if  by  magic,  a landscape that seemed  condemned  grows  green again,  and  life and youth gradually come  into their  own again-without realizing that this “miracle” is the work of one man’s hands. The story, like the film, is a tribute to patience and hard work, and to the generous heart of his shepherd who  is  deterred  neither  by  wars  nor  setbacks,  a  man  who  puts  himself  in  second  place,  behind  his  life’s work.

Directed by Frédéric Back