Love Me If You Dare is not your average movie about childhood sweethearts.

Julien and Sophie have been madly in love since grade school. Their love, however, is not expressed in words, but by playing a game in which they dare each other to perform stunts.

The stunts become more dangerous as time passes. Eventually, they go their separate ways, but even as they grow up, Julien and Sophie maintain a world to themselves. The game continues to be the spice of their lives, but their love never comes to fruition due to circumstances beyond their control. And the question posed to us is whether that kind of all-consuming love can ever be fully realized.

In his first feature film, writer/director Yann Samuell has created a love story that is by turns darkly comic and warmly ebullient, filled with cruelty and insult, but also with the exuberance of childhood.

Marion Cotillard and Guillaume Canet are almost perfect, giving taut performances in the movie's only two significant roles. When you're in love, other people just don't matter, right?

This is sort of a post-modern "fractured fairy tale" about love -- and immensely entertaining.

The two characters might seem like they do the cruelest things to each other, but they're only doing it out of love.

It seems that all really is fair in love and war.