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1,402 Ratings

Le petit amour

Kung-Fu master

Directed by Agnès Varda
France, 1988
Drama, Romance


On a rainy day in spring, Mary-Jane, a woman of almost 40, falls in love, or rather slides in love with a boy of nearly 15, Julien, a classmate of her daughter.

Our take

Agnès Varda’s Le petit amour sees real life mother and daughter Jane Birkin and Charlotte Gainsbourg exchange roles in a quietly transgressive look at the family institution that is both delicate and fun. Varda’s sensitivity is magnificent.

Le petit amour Directed by Agnès Varda
Kung-Fu Master is, in many respects, another love letter from Varda to Birkin, showcasing the actress’s quicksilver shifts of feeling, her beguiling blend of wry self-consciousness and at-times startling emotional fervor. This warmth carries over to the film’s view of Mary-Jane and helps to explain the tone of knowing compassion that greets even the most questionable of Mary-Jane’s choices.
October 26, 2016
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Agnès Varda’s 1988 features [Jane B. par Agnes V. and Kung-Fu Master!] are two of her most evocative, and provocative, films, and their release to wide availability is cause for celebration.
March 06, 2016
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In Kung-Fu Master!, these young veterans of intensely personal projects are all the more touching for the delight they seem to take, especially in their scenes together, at having the chance to play regular kids—even if ones advancing a highly unorthodox story. Unburdened by less overt autobiography, these enchanting adolescent actors, each the sole child of a legendary union, paradoxically appear most themselves.
October 19, 2015
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