Nona and Her Daughters (2023) Series Review
Valerie Donzellitelevision series Nona and her daughters tells the story of what would happen if a 70-year-old woman got pregnant. From her honest, bewildered reaction to her family’s desperate steps to understand and accept the unexpected. It’s a brutally honest and grounded take on the fractured dynamics of a family that’s already dysfunctional when something absurd shakes them out of their daily routine.
But Donzelli, who also writes alongside him Clémence-Madeleine Perdrillat, he does not like the easy and expected reaction to his assumption. We know Nona is pregnant because we see her x-rays, and there’s a sort of scientific approach at the beginning of the series, but it’s not about the extraordinary fact that someone that old can be a mother. This show is about how you react and behave around your environment. It’s a beautiful tale of family values in modern society, when women are a core that science can’t explain but is tangible enough to change their entire lives.
Nona is at the center without being in control of the most important moment of her life. Her daughters, Manu, Gaby, and George, recoil when they learn they will be sisters, but never question what will eventually become of their mother. In a very beautiful and unexpected order, Nona and her daughters it goes to a musical moment, and the heartbreaking feelings are expressed in the form of a melody.
Nona’s daughters decide their mother needs care. A midwife moves in, but due to an eviction notice, they all decide to move in together. This shakes the dramatic core of the series as it unfolds in all its French comedy glory. This is when Nona and her daughters it confirms its true spirit and the show becomes a drama with constant nods to the funny aspect of Nona’s pregnancy. However, the show is increasingly about three sisters living together as they face unexpected turns in their lives, but also try to cope with new romantic ventures and awkward family divorces. Oh, and the show makes a subtle supernatural sound when Nona’s belly starts emitting a strange red glow.
Regardless of the direction Donzelli takes in the middle part of the show, the engagement is almost magnetic. Sometimes it gets too silly and almost too funny, but when Nona and her daughters remains in a more serious tone, it becomes much more interesting than before. It couldn’t happen without the show’s most prominent element: an admirable cast that elevates the show above what some detractors say is ridiculous and exploitative. Such cast includes: Meow Meow, Virginie Ledoyen, Valerie Donzelli, Clotilde Hesme, Antoine Reinartz, Michel Vuillermoz. Miou Miou shines above everyone else.
Don’t let the initial sound put you off. The reality shock will come at some point Nona and her daughters, and we guarantee that you will not be prepared. But fortunately, Donzelli’s talent as a storyteller makes everything much easier to digest. He’s a natural.