7.0/10
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5 user 1 critic

La femme enfant (1980)

Elisabeth, a 11 year old girl, visits Marcel, a mute gardener every morning with whom she shares a very particular friendship. During three years, their bond grows stronger, as Marcel seems to be the only person she can connect to.

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(dialogue), (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Marcel
Pénélope Palmer ...
Élisabeth
...
Le père
Hélène Surgère ...
La mère
Ary Aubergé ...
L'épicier
Georges Lucas ...
Le curé
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Storyline

Elisabeth, a 11 year old girl, visits Marcel, a mute gardener every morning with whom she shares a very particular friendship. During three years, their bond grows stronger, as Marcel seems to be the only person she can connect to.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

3 December 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Kindfrau - Stumme Liebe  »

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(Eastmancolor)
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User Reviews

 
A lovely, bittersweet story
25 December 1999 | by (Ukiah, California) – See all my reviews

The protagonist is a musically-gifted young woman (hence, a "woman-child") who is an outcast both from her cold, uncaring family and from her village. She shares an unusual friendship with an older man (Klaus Kinski), also an outcast.

Comparisons between this film and, say, "Lolita" are inevitable, because of the characters' age difference and because of one scene where she dances costumed like a gypsy, to the seeming delight of Kinski's character. There is also one scene (filmed tastefully from the back) where she climbs into the bath while he is in the same room.

But to focus on these elements is to miss the point of the film -- that, because they are estranged from everyone else, they must draw strength from one another. Kudos to writer-director Raphaelle Billetdoux for this lovely, bittersweet film about the loneliness and pain of growing up; of being different; and, quite simply, of having to live; beautifully photographed, with a vivid performance from the young actress and an unusually sensitive performance by Kinski as the girl's companion and confidante.


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