Critic Reviews



Based on 17 critic reviews provided by
It's a movie that could easily have been made 50 years ago, and I don't mean that as a knock. There is much to be said for a film that values unflashy craft and simple, unhurried storytelling.
A polished, finely acted tale of love and class in the south of France.
The Well-Digger's Daughter offers a fervent poem to the region's abundant beauty.
The Well-Digger's Daughter pushes a number of nostalgia buttons at once, most of them pleasing.
The humanist spirit of Gallic novelist-director Marcel Pagnol is alive and well in the old-fashionedly sincere The Well-Digger's Daughter, a competent remake of Pagnol's eponymous 1940 melodrama about a working-class girl impregnated by a young pilot who's sent off to war.
Slant Magazine
Ultimately comes off as curiously anecdotal, lacking the dramatic dynamism that could give Marcel Pagnol's tale new life.
Like Provence itself, Auteuil is in no hurry to get anywhere, reveling instead in the southern region's brilliant light and whispering crickets. His tangy accent and evident fondness for his character make the picture enjoyable enough as it plods along, and the final act wraps things up on a fulfilling note.
Village Voice
Stirrings of dignified outrage via the eponymous well-digger eventually go a long way toward energizing the film, which improves markedly once it shifts its focus from the World War I–era milieu toward how quickly a naive young girl can turn into a fallen woman and the ways in which that fallout affects her father, her family, and apparently most importantly, her name.
Bergès-Frisbey and Duvauchelle make for a deliciously ripe pair - their cheekbones defy both gravity and sound facial architecture - but Auteuil is less interested in young lust than old world values.
There are times in The Well-Digger's Daughter, a once-upon-a-time French film about love, family and the seductive beauty of the Provençal countryside, when the story's sweetness nearly makes your teeth ache.

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