Pauline And Paulette

Pauline And Paulette


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

They are sisters. Paulette owns a fabrics shop in town, which is clean and smart. Pauline lives with another sister, Martha, in a pretty cottage surrounded by flowers. Paulette is the doyen of the amateur operatic society. Pauline is senile.

Making fun of old people who can't do up their shoe laces should not be attempted. Lieven Debrauwer doesn't try. Pauline may be a liability, because you can't leave her on her own, but she is treated with sympathy and played supremely well by Dora van der Groen.

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The film is small in scope, yet perfectly formed. When Martha dies unexpectedly, the question is what to do with Pauline. Paulette has her own life and Cecile, the sister who lives in Brussels, has hers. A care home is the obvious answer, but Martha's will states that if one of the sisters does not take her in, Pauline gets all the money.

The humour is low key. Most of the townsfolk are bourgeois and narrow-minded. Cecile's live-in lover is brutally selfish. Noone wants Pauline. She's an embarrassment, although not apparently incontinent.

The moral to the tale is that a dotty old bat has feelings, too. Although the script avoids cliché and Ann Peterson has an imposing presence, as Paulette, you feel that there should be more.

Reviewed on: 10 Apr 2002
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Two sisters in Belgium must decide who is going to look after their senile 66-year-old sibling.
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Director: Lieven Debrauwer

Writer: Jaak Boon, Lieven Debrauwer

Starring: Dora van der Groen, Ann Peterson, Rosemarie Bergmans

Year: 2001

Runtime: 78 minutes

BBFC: PG - Parental Guidance

Country: France, Netherlands


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