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Le chignon d'Olga (2002)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 383 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 13 critic

A bereaved young man falls in love with a shop assistant he glimpses in a window and secretly tries to get to know her better.

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Title: Le chignon d'Olga (2002)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Julien
Nathalie Boutefeu ...
Alice
Florence Loiret Caille ...
Emma (as Florence Loiret-Caille)
Serge Riaboukine ...
Gilles
Marc Citti ...
Pascal
Antoine Goldet ...
Basile
Valérie Stroh ...
Nicole
...
Marion
Jean-Michel Portal ...
Grégoire
...
Yves
Fabrice Cals ...
Ludovic
Isabelle Ungaro ...
Pascal's wife
Delphine Rollin ...
Olga, la libraire
...
Gregoires brother
Judith Rémy ...
La barmaid
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Storyline

A bereaved young man falls in love with a shop assistant he glimpses in a window and secretly tries to get to know her better.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

28 August 2002 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Le chignon d'Olga  »

Filming Locations:


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Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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References The Circus (1928) See more »

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User Reviews

Hardly anything new but wins by being charming, sweet, unassuming and gently entertaining
5 June 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Julien and Emma are brother and sister, living in rural France with their father, who writes children's books. Julien is a gifted pianist but the loss of his mother has sucked the joie de vivre out of him; his best friend Alice knows it although their platonic relationship is more about him supporting her in bad relationship choices than anything else. When he sees a beautiful woman called Olga in a bookstore, Julien is smitten and sets about to set up someway of impressing her and winning her affection. Emma meanwhile is a bit lost – looking after her father, experimenting with lesbianism and wondering where her career will go. Meanwhile their father has to look after a young nephew and deal with advances from the wife of his local pub landlord.

With a lightness and charm running throughout it, many viewers will be able to forgive this film for having a rather thin narrative. The plot is a gentle look at the lovelife of each character, not in too much detail but giving us enough to be interested in each person. By doing this it does limit the impact it can have, because this is like a character study without a great deal of depth and it relies very much on us getting into the mood to be taken along with the air of comic romance that it has. This is quite easy to do though, because the film is sweet and charming throughout; the writing is nothing special but it is natural enough to create reasonably real people for us to get into.

This is helped by the cast doing roundly good jobs. Benhamdine is a bit wishy-washy and perhaps a bit like a moody teen but interesting nonetheless and still someone I came to like. Boutefeu plays a known role of "friend whom it has never gotten on with" but she is sweet enough to make you believe that the two friends are platonic but yet that something more is possible – this dynamic can easily look forced but Boutefeu and Benhamdine make it work. Loiret is good and I would have liked the film to do more with her than it did; although I think that the minor story of their father was enough to add depth, even if it was basic. Despite being the title character Rollin has little to do, but the camera makes good use of her by showing how the little things can make a woman seem magical – in Olga's case it is the soft fabric she wears that appears to slide over silky skin with each movement. This observation is one of many nice touches by Bonnell as director; he moves the camera naturally and frames his shots well.

Overall there is not much to this film and much of it you will have seen in other mainstream romantic comedies. However what makes this worth seeing is that it manage to make this formula work on someone as jaded as me – it is sweet, unassuming, charming and as gentle as a kiss on the cheek; hardly cutting edge writing but I imagine it will win over most viewers quite easily.


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