It is for discerning movie palates, prepared to go with the flow of the leisurely pace that contrasts with the intensity
The tranquil beauty of rural Belgium and three outstanding juvenile performances are the highlights of this moody and haunting film that offers an unsettling glimpse of the pain of adolescence
A tremendously-promising French-language Belgian film about growing up the hard way.
| Original Score: 3/5
If you watch The Giants with no strong sense of urgency it's quite a beguiling portrait of resilient kidulthood.
| Original Score: 4/5
[A] Belgian coming-of-age drama that's just as hazily open-ended as childhood summers tend to be.
Even the tale's sagging, aimless middle section feels oddly of a piece.
The Giants, a lovely, sportive, bucolic film, turns Belgium into an annexe of Huck Finn country.
Wistful, beautiful-looking but as transient as that land of lost content.
Superbly directed and beautifully shot, this is an emotionally engaging and powerfully evocative coming-of-age story with a trio of terrific performances from its three young stars.
Bouli Lanners paints his story a little hazily, perhaps, but his gorgeously unselfconscious actors are faultless.
It suffers from an implausible and contrived plot, but the charming performances from the teenage leads greatly improve this film.
Lanners makes effective use of a string of fairytale settings (woods, rivers, spooky houses) in this atmospheric coming-of-age yarn.
While it certainly meanders at times, even lacking dramatic punch, The Giants still stands tall when it needs to.
It ranks among the genre's best, alongside Stand by Me (1986), Grave of the Fireflies (1988) and Lord of the Flies (1963).
Breezy and ominous, the film will sneak up on you. Look for a cameo from 1970s international It girl-turned-director Marthe Keller.
| Original Score: 3/4
If you want a refreshing coming-of-age comedy without any global pretensions set in the backwoods of Europe, you couldn't do better...