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Love Me If You Dare (2003)
"Jeux d'enfants" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama | Romance  -  14 May 2004 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 49,357 users   Metascore: 45/100
Reviews: 97 user | 74 critic | 30 from Metacritic.com

Julien Janvier lost his mother young, drifted apart from his working class father and ever closer to confident Sophie Kowalsky, the Polish class outsider. Their dares game, symbolized by an... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Thibault Verhaeghe ...
Joséphine Lebas-Joly ...
Emmanuelle Grönvold ...
Julien's Mother
Gérard Watkins ...
Julien's Father
...
Julia Faure ...
Sophie's Sister
Laëtizia Venezia Tarnowska ...
Christelle Louise Bouchard (as Laetizia Venezia)
...
Aurélie Miller
Nathalie Nattier ...
Robert Willar ...
Julien (80 ans)
Frédéric Geerts ...
Igor
Manuela Sanchez ...
Teacher
Philippe Drecq ...
School Principal
Edit

Storyline

Julien Janvier lost his mother young, drifted apart from his working class father and ever closer to confident Sophie Kowalsky, the Polish class outsider. Their dares game, symbolized by an interchanged music-box, grows ever bolder, regardless of harm to others and each-other. In his college years, it even suspends their relationship and toys with their marriages, but they are drawn back to each-other irresistibly. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From the visionary mind of director Yann Samuell comes France's hit comedy! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

14 May 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Love Me If You Dare  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$21,546 (USA) (21 May 2004)

Gross:

$548,707 (USA) (1 October 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Julien is at the cemetery on the day after which he and Sophie haven't seen each other for ten years, he wishes Sophie would just appear and sing "La Vie en Rose", a song by Édith Piaf. Marion Cotillard (Sophie) would later win an Academy Award for playing Piaf in La Vie en Rose (2007). See more »

Goofs

The first time we see the bus driver chasing the bus his hat falls off towards the left side of the road. The second time it drops directly behind him to the right of the middle. See more »

Quotes

Julien Jeanvier: [as Julien is fleeing from the police] Sophie was back in the game! Pure, raw, explosive pleasure! Better than drugs, better than smack! Better than a dope-coke-crack-fix-shit-shoot-sniff-ganja-marijuana-blotter-acid-ecstasy! Better than sex, head, 69, orgies, masturbation, tantrism, Kama Sutra or Thai doggy-style! Better than banana milkshakes! Better than George Lucas's trilogy, the muppets and 2001! Better than Emma Peel, Marilyn, Lara Croft and Cindy Crawford's beauty mark! Better than the ...
See more »

Connections

Remade as Karle Pyaar Karle (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

La Vie en Rose
Édith Piaf / Louiguy
Performed by Louis Armstrong
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Love Means Saying "Game"
27 August 2005 | by (Kentucky) – See all my reviews

The first feature from French director Yann Samuell is an "expressionistic" allegory about love, disguised as a romantic fantasy. It is about how in our relationships we never outgrow childhood games or fully recover from the insecurities caused by deep childhood wounds. It is about how people in love constantly test each other. Each dare is a renewed demand for the other person to prove their love, no matter what the sacrifice.

"Love Me If You Dare" is a gimmick translation of "Jeux d'enfants", a better translation would be "Games of Children". But given the general confusion about this film by English speaking viewers and critics the inaccurate title is probably appropriate. Film Theory 101 would include a discussion of the two basic film extremes, realism and expressionism. Generally the closer a film comes to reproducing reality, the less room there is for the filmmaker to express his artistry. Which is not to say that realism is necessarily less manipulative than expressionism, both aim to effect their viewing audience, expressionism is just less constrained.

When you are used to a steady diet of Hollywood realism, it is difficult to switch gears and watch a film like "Jeux d'enfants" without attempting to force it into the realism mold. The temptation is to gloss over the surreal elements and to take everything you see literally. But Samuell has a background as an illustrator and designer. Note the inventive visuals that employ a multitude of cardboard cutouts and idyllic fantasy settings. This is expressionism. Note the accelerated action segments and strange transitions. This is expressionism. Note the interesting time passage montages and flashbacks.

While you sometimes see similar stuff incorporated into a realistic film, it is explained away as a dream, hallucination, or memory. Here it is a tip-off that this is a surreal allegory like Bunuel's "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie". If you avoid taking "Jeux d'enfants" too literally, stop being judgmental about the actions and motivations of its characters, and focus instead on picking up its allegorical elements you will probably understand it better and enjoy it more.

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.


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