Doillon forces the camera to be very close to the children. This (and of course the impressive young actors) makes the film a very intimate event. Besides all the indoctrinating and depressing stuff the grown-ups implant into their children there are also some nice humoristic sequences like that cute talk about singles.
The way these little kids assimilate all the wacky theology inflicted on them is a microcosm. Strangely, many adults think it's a good idea to twist kids' minds up with these incomprehensible stories of heaven and hell. Ponette manages to find her own way of making some sense out of it. It's amazing to see such complex issues handled by such young actors (4-year olds!), maybe handled better than adults do.
How to be a terrible adult to a child 101. Deny their feelings, make your love conditional on them denying their own feelings, make it all about your feelings, bluntly tell them truths they can’t handle, tell lies about things they see, tell fairy tales from your silly religion, & on and on. Neat to see a film of mostly children and nature, though poorly written + with bizarre adult projections onto child psychology.
Sometimes it’s boring, but mostly endearing. I don’t know how this 4-year-old Victoire Thivisol can manage to act so naturally as a sad melancholic child that learns to be happy. But she does. Watching an innocent child cries and says, “I want to die,” is not an enjoyable experience, eh? I guess I should cheer myself up with a cup of coffee and Hey Arnold the series :P.
it is a movie not only about spirituality and dealing with the loss, but also about getting lost in the everyday world of false theories and opinions, which might become dangerous especially at the age of ponette, the ending is a bit out of place, but victoire thivisol is worth all the credit she got for the role, simply incredible