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The "pieds-noir" were Algerians of French heritage who were forced to return to France in 1962, when Algeria became independent. In the first part of this film, based on a novel by Daniel Saint-Hamon, the Narbonis run a little grocery in Algeria and keep their noses out of politics entirely. They are content to mind their own business, in the hopes that others will be equally sensible. Thus, they are bewildered when, in 1962, they are forced to leave what has by now become their native land for the strange country of France. In the second half of the film, their adjustment to life in France is aided by the same stick-to-business attitudes which earlier gave them difficulty. Nonetheless, they experience a number of setbacks, as when a slick Parisian (Michel Auclair) tries to talk them into going into business with him.