Synopsis: A collection of stories about and images of our world, offering an immersion to the core of what it means to be human.
Genre: Documentary
Production: GoodPlanet Foundation
  3 wins & 5 nominations.
190 min

Bettencourt Schueller Foundation


A GoodPlanet Foundation


With the participation of

France Tlvisions

A film by

Yann Arthus-Bertrand

I remember...

my stepfather

would beat me with extension cords

and hangers,

pieces of wood

and all kinds of stuff.

He would tell me:

"It hurt me more than you.

"I only did it, because I love you."

It communicated the wrong message

to me about what love was.

So, for many years,

I thought

that love was supposed to hurt.

I hurt everyone that I loved.

And I measured love

by how much pain

someone would take from me.

And it wasn't until I came to prison,

an environment

that is devoid of love,

that I began to have

some understanding

about what it actually

was and was not.

I met someone.

She gave me my first real insight

into what love was.

She saw past my condition

and the fact that I was in prison

with a life sentence

for doing the worst kind of murder

that a man can do:

murdering a woman and a child.

It was Agnes,

the mother and grandmother of...

Patricia and Chris, that I murdered,

who gave me

my best lesson about love.

By all rights, she should hate me.

But she didn't.

Over the course of time,

through the journey that we took,

it has been pretty amazing,

she gave me love.

She taught me what it was.

I'm very happy when it rains,

when I drink milk

and I have a good life.

When I put on weight.

I'm thin now.

When it rains,

I am very happy.

When I drink milk

and I eat everything I like.

And when I sleep with the man I love

who says sweet things to me.

And when I am in a nice hut

that protects me

from the cold and rain.

Those are the things

that make me happy.

Happiness, for us,

would be...

having food,

a small piece of land

and a real place to live,

with electricity day and night.

We wouldn't have to sleep

in the dark.

That would be happiness.

But we sleep on the floor,

without even a mat, on straw.

With electricity,

there would be light

in my children's lives.


as I had

a difficult childhood

without any money,

when I went to university,

I got a grant

and I bought myself a motorbike.


I was the first person

to start it up.

I was the first person to get on it

to go home.

When I feel the wind

whipping me as I ride along,

knowing that I'm not

on someone else's motorbike.

It's my very own motorbike.

I arrived home,

and to get to sleep,

I put the bike in my bedroom

and I locked myself in with it.

That way, I could smell

the hot engine.

The smell of the engine,

the new bike smell.

And when I turned the light on,

I could see it was my very own bike.

I couldn't put the bike

on the bed, under the covers,

but it's what I wanted to do.


I felt it. Yes.

That was a moment

of great happiness for me.


is the children coming home.

That's a mother's happiness.

It's when my husband

comes home, smiles,

and kisses me,

after 33 years of married life.

That's a woman's happiness.

Happiness is hearing

my grandchildren saying: "Grandma!"

When they say that, you feel older,

but that's happiness, too.

It's also meeting colleagues

who are happy to see you.

They think:

"She's here, let's talk."

That's happiness, too.

It's getting up in the morning

and not hurting anywhere.

That's happiness, too.

It's the rain which is the promise

of a good harvest.

There are many kinds of happiness,

but at the same time,

there's only one:

you're alive, so you're happy.

Just my experiences

from being in a wheelchair

and traveling the world

in a wheelchair

I've seen life from a different angle

and that's taught me

on a spiritual level

to just accept and to be happy,

whatever's coming next.

I'm so mentally strong.

The only reason is because

of losing my legs physically.

My eyesight's sharper, my ears are...

I can hear much better.

So, that's on a physical sense, but

I feel I'm lucky, as in

I don't analyze

or question life too much.

I can cruise through life

and always be

in the right place at the right time.

I always have amazing things

happen to me.

I'm really lucky in that situation.

But that comes from believing in luck

or believing

in the power of attraction

or believing in

attracting the goodness

into one's life.

And I think

that can be seen as luck.

So, if God Himself

jumped down in front of me right now

and said to me:

"Bruno, I'll give you back your legs,

"but I'll take away all that

you've learned in the last 13 years."

I'll tell God:
"Keep your legs."

We didn't use to die like today.

We lived in peace.

Our fighting didn't kill us.

There was only one gun per village.

What decimates us is the Kalashnikov.

Before, we only died

from sickness and disease.

A few people died:

a sick person, an old man, a baby.

Only the weak.

The victims of the Kalashnikov

are countless.

Our fighting is degenerating.

3 men die from one shot.

Yesterday, people died.

We didn't bury them.

Maybe animals ate them.

That weapon is bad.

It deprives the young generation

and the country

of peace.

As soon as I took up arms,

I felt fear.

Fear is a human feeling.

I was afraid of blood.

When I took up arms,

I went from being a teacher

to a man of arms.

I had no choice.

I saw and experienced things

which forced me to do it.

Sometimes my son asks me,

because it worries him:

"Dad, why this war?

Is there no end to it?

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Human" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 22 Jun 2024. <>.

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