A delicate working class story of romance between two thirtysomethings.

4.5
A delicate depiction of romance between two thirtysomethings, in the tradition of great French cinema.

Marius and Jeanette is set in Estaque, a suburb of Marseilles where Jeannette, Ariane Ascaride, is a single mum who works at the checkout of a supermarket trying to make ends meet for her two very bright kids, who had different fathers (one walked out, the other was killed in an accident). Sharing Jeannette`s courtyard are her friends Caroline, Pascale Roberts, a feisty Communist, and her occasional lover, the philosopher Justin, Jacques Boudet; and also Monique, Frederique Bonnal, and her husband, Dede, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, who`s still in disgrace because he once voted for the right-wing National Front.

Jeannette`s life is turned upside down when she`s fired from her job, and she starts seeing Marius, Gerard Meylan, a security guard with an imposing presence and a sweet disposition

Marius and Jeanette is in the finest tradition of French cinema. There isn`t much of a plot; the characters have long conversations about politics, religion, unemployment, sex and other everyday topics. They also prepare and eat scrumptious-looking meals and, occasionally, have too much to drink.

The ensemble cast never puts a foot wrong under Robert Guediguian`s immensely sympathetic direction and you`ll come away from this intelligent and optimistic film feeling that you`ve befriended some very lovely people.