Pascal Plante’s feature debut is a spry little rock-‘n’-roll romance so deliciously immediate that though you were likely never a tangle-headed, aspiring Quebecois tattoo artist in a Dead Kennedys tee it feels addressed to you in the second person.
Initially, Theo (Anthony Therrien) might be nothing but a scowl atop a punk-band T-shirt, concealed in a froth of dark hair that looks like a map of chaos. […] The girl is Mag (Rose-Marie Perreault), she of the straggly pink-blonde hair and merry smile, and she’s teasing him about the “tattoo” that’s partially visible under his sleeve.
There’s an enveloping warmth to Plante’s tender script and DP Vincent Allard’s buoyant images that belie the loose-limbed, offhand rhythm. It’s as though the film itself is constantly surprised – like its attractive protagonists — that there’s more here than just a fleeting one-night stand. Dialogues that could easily peter out instead flow conversationally in longish unbroken takes. Moments that could be obvious […] all play through in unforced, unexpected ways.
That mixture of the ephemeral and the eternal is what Fake Tattoos understands and enshrines so sweetly, permanently inking in a vivid, unsmudged outline of young love that’s as hokey and touching and sincere as a heart with a dagger through it.
Jessica Kiang, Variety