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The Well-Digger's Daughter (2011)
"La fille du puisatier" (original title)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  20 April 2011 (France)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 2,559 users   Metascore: 67/100
Reviews: 18 user | 58 critic | 17 from Metacritic.com

In 1930s southern France, a father is torn between his sense of honor and his deep love for his daughter when she gets in trouble with the wealthy son of a shopkeeper.

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(early screenplay), (adaptation)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
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Emilie Cazenave ...
...
Coline Bosso ...
Chloé Malarde ...
Brune Coustellier ...
Ilona Porte ...
Jean-Louis Barcelona ...
Patrick Bosso ...
Le garçon
François-Eric Gendron ...
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Storyline

Provence, the days before World War II. Rustic well-digger Pascal Amoretti, a widower, encourages fellow laborer Félipe Rambert to date his virgin eldest daughter Patricia, the only of his five who attended a Parish finishing school. Getting drunk, Felipe unwittingly helps her date wealthy general store owner Mazel's handsome, womanizing son, dashing air force pilot Jacques, who gives her a motorbike ride home, make love and get her pregnant. Shortly after, both men are called for military service. On leave, Felipe finds out the truth and still proposes. Jacques is reported missing in action, his family refuses to recognize the baby, so Pascal sends Patricia with it to his outcast sister. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 April 2011 (France)  »

Also Known As:

A Filha do Pai  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$10,273 (USA) (20 July 2012)

Gross:

$385,406 (USA) (15 March 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jacques motorcycle is a Triumph Speed Twin 5T. See more »

Goofs

When Pascal visits her sister Nathalie to check on Patricia, Nathalie is heard humming Nina Rota's Romeo and Juliet theme, which wasn't written until 1968. See more »

Connections

Remake of The Well-Digger's Daughter (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Foolin' Myself
(Crescenzo/Vincent Scotto)
Paroles et Musque de Peter Tinturin et Jack Lawrence
© Chappell & Co. (ASCAP)
Avec l'autorisation de Warner Chappell Music France
Version 78rpm, interprétée par Billie Holiday
(p) Originally released 1937 Sony Music Entertainment Inc.
Avec l'aimable autorisation de Sony Music Entertainment France
USA: Co-Publisher by Range Road Music Inc. (ASCAP)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
in hands of red clay, down the well
28 December 2011 | by (Japan) – See all my reviews

A wonderful cast facilitate Daniel Auteuil's vision of wartime France in this gentle, love-filled drama/comedy about a working man's attempt to maintain the honour of his family after his eldest of six daughters go astray.

Pascal has always wanted a son, but finds himself a hard-working widowed father of six daughters instead. When the son of local bourgeoisie, the Mazels, seduces his daughter before being packed off to war, Pascal and his daughter are ill-treated by the frosty Mazels. Pascal learns not to trust people "who sell tools, but never use them." But he is also honorable, exiling his disgraced daughter Patricia, who herself refuses compromise by rejecting the repeated proposals of her father's co-worker Félipe, an honest, industrious, but prosaic individual. Pascal has honour, but Félipe has love. The war intervenes in events, not once but several times, becoming a catalyst that brings to resolution the feud between the two families from opposite classes.

Auteuil handles the comedy effortlessly, but also shows depth and steel when darker tones are needed, such as handling the humiliations dished out carelessly by the shallow, emotionally volatile Mrs. Mazel. Astrid Bergès-Frisbey is simply superb as the much-wronged Patricia. Her expression when waiting by the church for a lover she believes has spurned her is exquisitely pained.

The direction keeps most of the action outdoors or in daytime, allowing Provence to glimmer and shine. There are small moments of poetry here; Pascal turn-taking a kiss with his youngest daughter as they wait for guests;interactions with a baby who melts everyone's heart, cast and audience alike; the strong bond of friendship between Pascal and Félipe.

This is a well-crafted tale of love, family, work and honour that never gets too sentimental and earns the many tears and smiles it evokes. An uplifting, joyful film, and we all need one of those from time to time.


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