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The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane

This film, about a homicidal orphan girl, is farfetched nonsense with precious little to appease shriek freaks. Laird Koenig's screenplay from his novel is riddled with unsuspended disbelief - coincidences, gimmicks.

With:
Jodie Foster Martin Sheen Alexis Smith Mort Shuman Scott Jacoby Dorothy Davis

This film, about a homicidal orphan girl, is farfetched nonsense with precious little to appease shriek freaks. Laird Koenig’s screenplay from his novel is riddled with unsuspended disbelief – coincidences, gimmicks.

Jodie Foster plays an all-alone sangfroid little liar of 13 going on 23 who, true to her late daddy’s counsel, isn’t about to let herself be pushed around or dominated by crummy grownups. Martin Sheen plays a sicko with a thing for little girls who harasses the kid. Alexis Smith is a snoopy big deal in the small local community.

One of the few agreeable angles is the relationship between Foster and Scott Jacoby, wary at first but which ripens into a boudoir romance. As a simpatico lad with a gamy leg from polio, Jacoby’s performance has nice verve.

Foster’s poise is impressive enough as the cool, calculating adolescent with a passion for Chopin records. But it’s a one-note character. Film was shot on locations in Canada.

The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane

Canada - France

Production: ICL/Filmel. Director Nicholas Gessner; Producer Zev Braun; Screenplay Laird Koenig; Camera Rene Verzier; Editor Yves Langlois; Music Christian Gaubert; Art Director Robert Prevost

Crew: (Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1977. Running time: 91 MIN.

With: Jodie Foster Martin Sheen Alexis Smith Mort Shuman Scott Jacoby Dorothy Davis

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