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Halo 5 Guardians
The Master Chief returns
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

Josiane Balasko
Garance Le Guillermic
Togo Igawa
Anne Brochet
Wladimir Yordanoff.
Mona Achache.
Mona Achache.
Running Time
100 minutes

4 Star Empire Rating
2 Star Empire Rating
Intern, The
3 Star Empire Rating
Beasts Of No Nation
4 Star Empire Rating
Nightmare, The
3 Star Empire Rating

5 Star Empire Rating
Man With A Movie Camera
5 Star Empire Rating
Salt Of The Earth, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Song Of The Sea
5 Star Empire Rating
Look Of Silence, The
5 Star Empire Rating

The Hedgehog
Eats bugs, hiberates in winter

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World-weary Parisian tween Paloma (Garance Le Guillermic) decides to end it all before she reaches her twelfth birthday. An encounter with grumpy building concierge, Renee (Balasko), gives her reasons to wait a little longer.

The Hedgehog
Mona Achache makes an accomplished debut with this adaptation of Muriel Barbery’s novel. Concentrating on 11 year-old Garance Le Guillermic’s confused take on adult behaviour, there is innovative use of inner monologues, Hi-8 footage and animated inserts, charting her relationship with her Champagne-swilling mother and distant father. Friendships with retired Togo Igawa and widowed concierge Josiane Balasko offer insights into a grown-up world where appearances are often deceptive. Le Guillermic is precocious and Igawa sweetly solicitous, but it’s Balasko’s shift from frumpy stereotype to the embodiment of her true nature that gives this engaging, melancholy fable its edgy charm.

Some acute performances do justice to the novel in a quirky adaptation of the novel. Balasko steals the show as the prickly concierge with the warmer side.

Reviewed by David Parkinson

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