Dare to resist: Marion Cotillard
photo: Jean-Claude Lother

A cutesy tale of endless childhood love, this French romantic fantasy begins with eight-year-olds Julien and Sophie learning to cope with catty peers and mean adults by inventing a private game of dare in which they execute equally catty/mean pranks to prove their mutual solidarity. Fans of Amélie will rejoice in the film's CGI-aided flights of fancy; all others will groan audibly and often as director Yann Samuell piles on the Nutrasweetened visuals. As the protagonists grow older, their game escalates into a series of cruel practical jokes often aimed at each other. The movie's hyperactivity eventually yields to such revelations as Life Isn't a Game and The Biggest Dare Is Love, but the ultimate measure of its conventionality is its soundtrack: Those for whom "La Vie en Rose" induces twitches of annoyance will be virtually incapacitated by its 10th airing, which arrives right around the movie's halfway point.

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