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Petit Nicolas review

Nostalgia can't be the only reason for the huge French success of this smart, sweet adap of René Asterix Goscinny’s ’60s tales of a well-meaning schoolboy.

It’s a retro-revelling comedy in the Just William mould, getting its biggest laughs from a plot hatched by Nicolas (Maxime Godart) and his school chums to have gangsters kidnap the baby brother he suspects is forthcoming.

Director Laurent Tirard ( Molière ) gets a bit Amélie -twee, but Valerie Lemercier and the bumbling Kad Merad let rip hilariously as Nicolas’ parents, and short, simple English subtitles let kids in on the jokes.

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