Petite Maman is the poignant and thought-provoking 2021 film from Celine Sciamma, the French director who had a huge international hit with Portrait of a Lady on Fire. It is about a young girl, Nelly, who goes back to help her parents clear out the house of her recently deceased grandmother. Whilst there she meets another girl in the nearby woods, with whom she plays and talks about… well, what exactly? This is a mysterious and beguiling film about loss and family - part fantasy, part ghost story, with echoes of Studio Ghibli.

Peter Bradshaw gave it a five star review in the Guardian: “Céline Sciamma’s beautiful fairytale reverie is occasioned by the dual mysteries of memory and the future: simple, elegant and very moving. I fell instantly under its spell, and found myself thinking of classic English tales such as Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce, or The Child in Time by Ian McEwan.”

While Mark Kermode in the Observer wrote: “Whether you are six or 60, this astonishingly insightful and heartbreakingly hopeful cinematic poem will pierce your heart, broaden your mind and gladden your soul, even as you wipe away tears.”

(Petite Maman is in French with subtitles.)

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