18 November 2012 6:18 AM, PST | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

Whimsical and high-concept, and featuring a standout performance from our new boyfriend Jérémie Elkaïm, who has just won Best Actor at the Rome Film Festival for this role (clearly the jury was crushin' on him too), "Hand in Hand" ("Main dans la Main") is a gentle, quirky take on the mystical and somewhat random power of attraction and love. By contrast with the artifice of the other French rom-com we reviewed in Rome, "Populaire," writer-director (and supporting star and Elkaïm's wife) Valérie Donzelli's lightness of touch evokes more the sensibility of a loved-up Miranda July in its attention to off-kilter but grounded detail. Or maybe it's just that lead actress, well-respected French thesp Valérie Lemercier, also excellent, here reminds us of July. It's the hair. Whatever the case, the film bubbles along nicely, with our two appealing leads bringing nuance to an idea that in the wrong hands »

- Jessica Kiang

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Miranda July
Valérie Donzelli
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