Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Set in the suburban Paris neighbourhood of Sarcelles, known as 'Little Jerusalem' due to its large Jewish population, the film focuses on 18-year-old student Laura (Valette) as she tries to reconcile all the conflicting influences and feelings to which study and experience have introduced her. Religion, philosophy, romantic love and sensual desire all vie for the heart and mind of this smart, serious teenage girl in this skilfully balanced debut feature from writer-director Karin Albou. (Kino International) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    Beautifully played by Valette and Zylberstein, and directed with amazing grace by Albou, this touching film offers a respectful, fascinating look at a community that's ignored as often as it's misunderstood.
  2. The sensuality is never salacious, merely curious, and the message is empowering ... at least within the confines of the insular community.
  3. 80
    Philosophy and religion become entangled with love and sex in Karin Albou's intelligent, sensual drama.
  4. Reviewed by: Lisa Nesselson
    In what is arguably her best performance since "Van Gogh," Zylberstein brings Mathilde to life with grace and fervor.
  5. Stylish and well-observed while ultimately not adding up to very much.
  6. Reviewed by: Nathan Lee
    For the first full hour, as we're guided inside privacies of culture and consciousness, Ms. Albou sustains her rich and gently intoxicating mode of storytelling, a feat all the more admirable in light of the overly schematic script.
  7. Writer-director Karin Albou nicely balances intellect against spirituality but is defeated by the sex scenes, which are tinged with an Orientalist exoticism; the result is a bodice-ripper for the art-house crowd.

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1