In this radiant tale, Céline Sciamma crafts a mysterious and delicate exploration of childhood and grief.
Screening across the UK: This film is also screening at Chapter Cardiff, Edinburgh Filmhouse, Glasgow Film Theatre, HOME Manchester, Showroom Cinema Sheffield, Tyneside Cinema Newcastle, Queen’s Film Theatre Belfast, Watershed Bristol. Visit our partner venues’ websites to search performances and book tickets.
Joséphine Sanz, Gabrielle Sanz, Nina Meurisse
France 2021. 72min
With English subtitles
Following her grandmother’s death, eight-year-old Nelly travels to the old woman’s home to help her parents pack everything up. After her mother unexpectedly leaves, Nelly befriends a little girl in a nearby forest – an encounter that reveals a strange and beguiling new world. You don’t want to know too much about Petite Maman in advance to fully appreciate its quiet yet powerful magic. Tightly packed into its brief running time and realised entirely at a child’s perspective, Sciamma (Portrait of a Lady on Fire, LFF 2019) draws inspiration from the fantastical world of Hayao Miyazaki to explore the theme of the Mother and the complexity of growing-up. Evocative autumnal cinematography (thanks to director of photography extraordinaire Claire Mathon), understated mise-en-scène and pitch-perfect performances from its young cast drive this deeply imaginative and tender film.
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