I Love You, I Love You Not

  • 1997
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

Not even a trio of strong performances can rescue this poorly directed tale of a teenage girl's coming of age in the shadow of her grandmother's memories of Auschwitz. Manhattan high-school student Daisy (Claire Danes) is a painfully shy and bookish child with absentee parents, few friends and no siblings. Daisy's only real contact with the outside world...read more

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Reviewed by Ken Fox
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Not even a trio of strong performances can rescue this poorly directed tale of a teenage girl's coming of age in the shadow of her grandmother's memories of Auschwitz. Manhattan high-school student Daisy (Claire Danes) is a painfully shy and bookish child with

absentee parents, few friends and no siblings. Daisy's only real contact with the outside world is her intense relationship with Nana (Jeanne Moreau), her beloved grandmother and best friend. At Nana's country home they read, walk in the woods and confide in one another: Daisy talks about her

infatuation with Ethan (Jude Law), the handsome captain of the lacrosse team, while Nana spins stories from her own adolescence, cloaking still-painful memories of the Holocaust in the language of fairy tales. Daisy is fascinated by the stories and the number tattooed on Nana's arm, but as her

relationship with Ethan becomes increasingly serious she must come to grips with how deeply she herself has been marked by her grandmother's experiences. There are interesting ideas under all this -- the ways in which the Holocaust continues to haunt its survivors and their families for

generations to come, and how that awful legacy can even assume the shape of shame -- and they're well worth exploring. But these potentially powerful themes are so badly handled by casting agent turned director Billy Hopkins that it's smothered under an awkwardly paced, saccharine-sweet mess of a

movie that actually wants to juxtapose the unspeakable horror of Nana's life with Daisy's high-school heartache. Moreau, Danes and Law do their best, but the odds against them -- which include bad writing, dreadful editing and a truly awful soundtrack -- are simply overwhelming.

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  • Released: 1997
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Not even a trio of strong performances can rescue this poorly directed tale of a teenage girl's coming of age in the shadow of her grandmother's memories of Auschwitz. Manhattan high-school student Daisy (Claire Danes) is a painfully shy and bookish child… (more)

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