Mary-Jane, a lonely mother in her fourties, get absorbed in a sentimental affair with a 14 years old boy.


Agnès Varda


Jane Birkin (story), Agnès Varda
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Jane Birkin ... Mary-Jane / mother
Mathieu Demy ... Julien
Charlotte Gainsbourg ... Lucy / Mary-Jane's daughter
Lou Doillon Lou Doillon ... Lou / Mary-Jane's daughter
Gary Chekchak Gary Chekchak ... Un jeune / A young
Cyril Houplain Cyril Houplain ... Un jeune
Frank Laurent Frank Laurent ... Un jeune
Aurélien Hermant Aurélien Hermant ... Un jeune
Jérémie Luntz Jérémie Luntz ... Un jeune
Thomas Bensaïd Thomas Bensaïd ... Un jeune
Pénélope Pourriat Pénélope Pourriat ... Une jeune
Ninon Vinsonneau Ninon Vinsonneau ... Une jeune
Bégonia Leis Bégonia Leis ... Une jeune
Eva Simonet Eva Simonet ... L'amie
Judy Campbell ... La mère / Mary-Jane's mother


Mary-Jane, a loving but lonely 40-year-old divorcee with two daughters, Lucy and Loulou asks, "Do all women fall in love with a boy, or just those without sons?" Lucy has a party where Mary-Jane notices Julien, 14, small and brassy, but she sees a sensitive side. She contrives to spend time with him and lets him know she's available to him. He's on the cusp between child and man, alternating between playing a video game, Kung Fu Master, where he tries to rescue Sylvie, and joining friends in bluff talk about sexual exploits. As Lucy realizes what is happening, she's repulsed, but Mary-Jane, encouraged by her own mother, carries on. Is it love or jealousy of lost youth? Is there any way this can end well?

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He was 15. She was 40. Love is where you find it.


Drama | Romance


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Named after the video game Kung-Fu Master (1984). See more »


Features Kung-Fu Master (1984) See more »


Written and Performed by Les Berurier Noir
See more »

User Reviews

Requiem for a long-lost youth
30 September 2015 | by baderfanSee all my reviews

A requiem for a long-lost youth begging to close the door on the past bereavements by tricking the ungainly mother living her lorn childhood dream; This time with the pure, yet infeasible love of a playful child.

Such doomed to failure passion for an immature boy seems to be incontrovertible to all the sane,mature beings, yet the irresistible temptation of being cherished and loved by someone after a long time, even for a small moment, makes the ill-fated adult mother blind to the consequences.

An uncanny story which which may choose to express itself simply and plainly, by not going too deep and remains at the surface with its characters, but still is satisfying,well-crafted and well-played.

/ B+

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Official Sites:

Ciné-Tamaris [France]




French | English

Release Date:

November 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Kung-Fu Master! See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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