Kung Fu Master

  • 1987
  • Movie
  • R
  • Romance

Directed by French filmmaker Agnes Varda (VAGABOND), KUNG FU MASTER concerns a divorced, 40-year-old Parisian mother of two, Mary-Jane (Jane Birkin), who falls in love with Julien (Mathieu Demy), a 14-year-old video game enthusiast (prompting the misleading title). The scandal that results causes Mary-Jane to lose custody of her adolescent child (played...read more

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Directed by French filmmaker Agnes Varda (VAGABOND), KUNG FU MASTER concerns a divorced, 40-year-old Parisian mother of two, Mary-Jane (Jane Birkin), who falls in love with Julien (Mathieu Demy), a 14-year-old video game enthusiast (prompting the misleading title). The scandal that results

causes Mary-Jane to lose custody of her adolescent child (played by Birkin's real-life daughter, Charlotte Gainsbourg), as well as Julien. She is devastated; he, on the other hand, seems to take it rather well, telling his friends that the liaison was a "duty" he performed for Mary Jane. Has

Julien lost his grand passion, or was he ever capable of it in the first place? Is Mary Jane going to get over her love for him? Will anyone figure out what she saw in him to begin with? It's the last question that's most troubling. Rather than suggesting that the divorcee is too old for this

young man, the film implies that he isn't old enough to consummate the affair. But if their relationship isn't based on sex, it seems equally unlikely that it is based on intellectual affinity, and his extreme youth invests the romance and the film as a whole with the chill of perversion, even as

Varda appears to be trying to persuade viewers of the normalcy of the situation.

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  • Released: 1987
  • Rating: R
  • Review: Directed by French filmmaker Agnes Varda (VAGABOND), KUNG FU MASTER concerns a divorced, 40-year-old Parisian mother of two, Mary-Jane (Jane Birkin), who falls in love with Julien (Mathieu Demy), a 14-year-old video game enthusiast (prompting the misleadin… (more)

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