Based on a true story, The Intouchables (2011 – Nakache, Toledano) is a French comedy-drama buddy flick about the bond between an extremely wealthy quadriplegic man named Philippe (François Cluzet) and the unambitious, streetwise Driss (Omar Sy) whom he pulls out of welfare to be his caregiver.

It’s a familiar set-up, but for a film about a poor black guy and a rich white disabled guy it’s surprising that The Intouchables makes little effort to force a moral point.  It dances around all the obvious clichés and tropes, and is a much better film for it.  In the same way that Philippe enlists Driss because of his lack of pity, the absence of a preachy undertone is what makes The Intouchables such a warm-hearted pleasure to watch.

A particular scene sums up The Intouchables well:  At the tail end of a posh, uptight birthday party, Driss and Philippe are smoking marijuana…

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