The Fabre family has just moved into the neighborhood. Hanna (Michèle Laroque) and Pierre (Jean-Philippe Écoffey) have 4 children - one girl and three boys. Well, maybe not 3 boys. Ludo (Georges Du Fresne) believes that he is a girl. A seven year old girl. He likes to dress up as a girl and play dolls. He does not play sports like the other boys, because he believes that he is a girl God has built wrongly - forgetting an X for him, instead of the Y he is trapped with - an XY. And Ludo is obsessed to be Pam, the Barbie-alike, instead of wanting to be Ben, the guy in the Pam-Ben package.

I often prefer coming out and coming of age stories, where the film deals with a teenage guy falls in love with another guy. So, for me, to watch Ma Vie En Rose and to think of the trans issue, is usually a non-interest topic for me. But it was hard to be not interested when the movie was made so well.

Ma Vie En Rose is co-written (with Chris Vander Stappen) and directed by Alain Berliner. It is a marvelous film, deserved to awed over again and again. It is an uplifting story about the world of a kid, and how the kid should be understood, instead of being judged. It's about us not imposing thoughts and ideas on others, when they don't fit into our stereotyped world.

I was enchanted by the bond shared between Hanna and Ludo. The mother-son relationship was the center of the story, and not of Ludo obsession to marry his neighbor boy, Jerome. It was Hanna who initially protected Ludo's confusion with his identity when Pierre was upset. Count in Elizabeth (Hélène Vincent), Ludo's liberal-thinking grandma, to support Ludo through his obsession to cross-dress. And the psychiatrist's treatment was not working well for Ludo, who was already forced to deny his inner thoughts and feelings.

Eventually Ludo's issue became a cause of concern among the neighbors, including Pierre's boss, Jerome's father. When Pierre lost his job, it was the protective Hanna who lost her cool, and started to treat Ludo coldly.

I was puzzled with Pierre's sudden turn-around as the accepting father. Somehow, he emerged as the guy who was cool with Ludo's inability to adapt. Hanna became the temperamental one.

The near-ending scene was a touching one, where adults are taught to be more open-minded and not to lose oneself in our expectation of how a world should be.

A marvelous movie.


  • Won 1997 Golden Swan in Cabourg Romantic Film Festival
  • Won 1997 Best Screenwriter in European Film Awards
  • Won 1997 Jury Award for Best Film and Presidential Award for Best Foreign Language Film in Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival
  • Won 1998 Outstanding Film (Limited Release) in GLAAD Media Awards
  • Won 1998 Best Foreign Language Film in Golden Globes, USA
  • Won 1997 Box Office Award in Joseph Plateau Awards
  • Won 1997 Crystal Globe in Karlovy Vary International Film Festival
  • Won 1997 Best Film Award in Molodist International Film Festival
  • Won 1997 FIPRESCI Prize in Sarajevo Film Festival
  • Won 1997 Audience Award in Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival
  • Won 1997 3rd Place Audience Award in São Paulo International Film Festival


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