Movie Review

Ponette

Not Rated; In French with English Subtitles

Reviewed by: Matt Leamy
CONTRIBUTOR

Good
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
All Ages
Genre:
Drama
Length:
1 hr. 37 min.
Not rated

Starring: Victoire Thivisol, Delphine Schiltz, Matiaz Bureau Caton, Leopoldine Serre, Marie Trintignant | Director: Jacques Doillon | Writer: Jacques Doillon

First of all this is a French film with English subtitles, but it is by far the best movie I have ever seen, it’s worth the reading. “Ponette” is about a four year-old girl whose mother dies in a car crash and how she deals with it.

She encounters a number of people telling her different ways to deal with her pain, most of which include God. Unfortunately, most of the advice comes from other children who know just enough about God coupled with their rampant imaginations to really confuse little Ponette.

This film pulls at your heartstrings as you watch a cute little four year old girl crying out in desperation to God. This is a painfully honest film, about a painful subject. That hasn’t had all of the unneeded factors (i.e. sex, violence, profanity) added so the public will view it. The ending could have used a bit of work, but it’s a movie, so it gets a happy ending and leaves you with a good message. Director Jaques Doillon does a wonderful job of making you feel as though you’re actually seeing the world through four year old eyes, with excellent dialog, and the fact that the camera is placed so that most adult are portrayed by their knees.

This film has no profanity or sex, and on a whole presents some pretty biblically sound advice on the greiving process for everyone.

Year of Release—1998

Related Questions

Why does God allow innocent people to suffer? Answer

What is the eternal destiny of an infant who dies? Answer

Viewer Comments
A poignant study of how small children deal with death. Christians will find fault with Ponette’s dad, who is presented here as somewhat of an atheist who basically tells his daughter to get over it. The ending might strike some as unrealistic, but the lead child actress is wonderful, as are the other children who play her friends and relatives. I suggest having plenty of Kleenex around when watching this one. My Ratings: [3½/4]
—Hillari Hunter, age 37