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This portrayal of the reunion of an estranged father and daughter is set against the backdrop of a theatrical production. The father Pierre (Michel Piccoli) is the artistic director of a theater, and when his daughter Manon (Sandrine Bonnaire) lets him know that she is coming to see him after a year's absence, Pierre decides to prepare for the meeting.
He goes to the theater with his girlfriend Ariane (Sabine Azema) and has the actresses in his troupe act out different aspects of his daughter's character. Unfortunately, this is not adequate preparation, for when Manon does show up, nothing goes quite as he imagined.