Despite the explanation in Wikipedia, I don't really get the title of this movie, which Brendan had taped for me recently. The story of 2 young women in a small town in Northern France, La vie rêvée des anges is very bleak - it always looks cold and grey there, and life is hard. Of the 2, Isa is a happy-go-lucky kind of girl, who finds a positive side to all situations, she treats others well, and she cares for her friends. Marie, on the other hand, is a very troubled young lady - she doesn't seem happy with her lot, she dumps a really nice guy (OK, he's fat, but he is really nice!), she falls in love with the wrong man, she expects the worst from life, and life generally delivers. And there is a 3rd young woman - Sandrine, who is in a coma. Neither of the other 2 knows her to start with, but they are connected. Isa decides to visit Sandrine in the hospital, whereas Marie has no interest.
Not surprising that the 2 actresses got the Best Actress award in Cannes in 1998. Natacha Régnier, who plays Marie, is Belgian by the way. Worth a mention!