5.9/10
569
13 user 22 critic

Girls Can't Swim (2000)

Les filles ne savent pas nager (original title)
Unrated | | Comedy, Drama | 18 October 2000 (France)
Even though they grew up in opposite parts of France, Gwen and Lise are best friends and spend every summer vacation together on the Brittany coast where Gwen lives and Lise's family has a ... See full summary »

Director:

Anne-Sophie Birot
4 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Isild Le Besco ... Gwen / Lise's friend
Karen Alyx Karen Alyx ... Lise / Gwen's friend
Pascale Bussières ... Céline / Gwen's mother
Pascal Elso Pascal Elso ... Alain
Marie Rivière ... Anne-Marie
Yelda Reynaud ... Solange
Sandrine Blancke Sandrine Blancke ... Vivianne
Julien Cottereau Julien Cottereau ... Frédo / Gwen's friend
Dominique Lacarrière Dominique Lacarrière ... Rose
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
France Besson France Besson
Damien Boenwec Damien Boenwec
Yves Claessens Yves Claessens
Sylvie Contant Sylvie Contant
Youenn Dorval Youenn Dorval
Julien Honoré Julien Honoré
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Storyline

Even though they grew up in opposite parts of France, Gwen and Lise are best friends and spend every summer vacation together on the Brittany coast where Gwen lives and Lise's family has a summer home. But this summer is different because Lise's family isn't going on vacation for reasons that she won't explain to Gwen. Sick of her parents bickering about money and missing her bosom buddy, Gwen finds a boyfriend and mingles with some horny out-of-towners. Now fifteen, she's discovered that summer can be fun even if Lise isn't there. Then suddenly, Lise shows up at Gwen's house uninvited to stay for a couple of weeks. The following days are filled with unexpected surprises, causing the girls to reevaluate the importance of their friendship and the nature of their teenage anxieties. Written by lament

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

18 October 2000 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Banot Lo Sohot See more »

Filming Locations:

Brittany, France See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,238, 21 April 2002

Gross USA:

$69,250

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$69,250
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

My most bizarre film experience
11 August 2002 | by kranbotSee all my reviews

My sister and I saw this film at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago. The film seemed to drag on forever without much forward motion. When it finally ended, the entire audience burst out laughing--a very odd response to a tragic narrative. I'm not really sure why everyone laughed--nervous tension, perhaps, since the film ends on a down-note. But, it was more than that. It seems that the pacing and the setting were so culturally removed from what most Americans are used to that the film seems almost absurd. Absurd is really not the right word--perhaps the film is just very difficult to identify with due to the overlong and tedious pacing and the utter lack of humorous moments to offset the downward spiral into sadness. I hate to mention cultural difference as being a reason to judge a film, but clearly some universal message was missing. Kieslowski's _Ten Commandments_ are examples of films that depict a very different culture from what some people in other countries might experience, but Kieslowski manages to instill a sense of humanity and timelessness to his work that _Girls Can't Swim_ cannot seem to muster.

And from my perspective, the two girls simply weren't very compelling. One teenage girl explores sex, the other is depressed over her father's death and does things like see how long she can hold her breath under water. Ho hum. Both could have used a bit more character development.

This isn't a bad film--just a very slow, humorless one.


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