The Grocer's Son Review

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Young Antoine reluctantly returns from the city to his village to take over his father's grocery delivery route when his father suffers a stroke. Relationship are tense but they look like they may improve.


Recalling Marcel Pagnol’s humanist charmer The Baker’s Wife (1938) with its sly town-and-country comparisons, this is a film that delights in rejuvenating clichés. Scowling at everyone when he’s not feuding with brother Stéphan Guérin-Tillié, Nicolas Cazalé makes an archetypal prodigal after he returns home to run father Daniel Duval’s mobile shop.

But director Eric Guirado resists wholly reforming Cazalé, and although the beauty of Laurent Brunet’s cinematography will mislead some into dismissing it as blandly feelgood, this considered comedy has much to say about the dynamics of family life, the incertitude of the rural idyll and tradition’s place in a globalised society.

A little predictable in places, but explores family relationships with pathos and perception.