A woman (Juliette Binoche) with an illegitimate young daughter moves to a French village in 1959 and opens a confectionary shop across from the church. She’s an imaginative confectioner and even something of a mind reader in guessing her customers’ tastes; the villagers give in to temptation, and controversy rages. The director (Lasse Hallstrom) and cast (which also includes Judi Dench, Alfred Molina, Lena Olin, Peter Stormare, Johnny Depp, and Leslie Caron) are all excellent, though the material of this comedy-dramaRobert Nelson Jacobs’s adaptation of a novel by Joanne Harrisis a bit on the smarmy side, predicated mainly on the audience feeling very wise and moral. 121 min. (JR)

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