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Manon of the Spring

Starring: Daniel Auteuil, Yves Montand
Director: Claude Berri
Genre: Drama
Year: 1986
Rating: 4 / 5

Reviewed by Guest Scribe Legend

Manon of the Spring is the sequel to Jean de Florette. It fits so seamlessly into the first movie that, for all intents and purposes, the two can be considered one long film. It is quite a necessary watch for viewers of Jean de Florette, given the ending of the first film and Manon's role in that ending. While not as charming as Jean de Florette, Manon of the Spring is still a worthwhile watch.

Between the two movies, a course of years has elapsed. Ugolin and Cesar have not changed too much it would seem. Cesar, getting on in years, wishes nothing more than for his nephew to wed to carry on the Soubeyran family name. We also see Manon (the ravishing Emmanuelle Béart), who has blossomed into adulthood and has taken up the life of a shepherdess in the nearby countryside.

Irony plays a large role in this movie. We learn of the relationship between Cesar and Florette (who is the mother of Jean the hunchback from the first film - hence the title Jean de Florette). We also learn that Ugolin wants a singular woman for his wife - Manon, the daughter of the man whom he caused ruthless suffering through his duplicity and nondisclosure in the first film. Manon, of course, wants nothing to do with him.

Manon of the Spring is significantly more intense than Jean de Florette. For example, Ugolin in one scene actually sews Manon's ribbon onto his chest. This level of intensity is a marked change from the sort of drama in the first film, which retains a certain lightheartedness to it despite the dire lack of water hindering a family's survival. When pieced together with Jean de Florette, the story becomes a rather enormous tragedy and a demonstration of the axiom "What goes around comes around."


Daniel Auteuil..........Ugolin Soubeyran
Yves Montand..........Cesar Soubeyran
Emmanuelle Beart..........Manon

Certification: Rated PG.
Running Time: 113 minutes.

Additional Info: Internet Movie Database
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