November 24, 2013
Blue is the Warmest Color: A review
First impressions? Wow, there’s a feckload of close ups! Give me Adèle’s face smeared in Bolognese oil one more time and… well, just don’t. Ok?
This arty French flick is the latest lesbo hit to come out of the Cannes Film Festival, and boy it doesn’t disappoint. I went to watch the movie with a 100-odd group of lesbians (Running Amach Irish lesbian social group), most of who said it was awfully long, but they notably didn’t complain about the lengthy sex scenes!
We’re introduced to our young protagonist, Adèle, as she runs to school, making it just in time for her French lit. lessons. She LOVES to read, and this is how we meet her subsequent boyfriend – a peer pressured school crush she discusses her books with.
Soon after she finds the f*cking a snore, she latches eyes on ‘the mysterious girl with the blue hair’, who she fantasises about. Often. And we get to see it all!
Anyway, long (long!) story short, they end up getting together and BAM, cue sumptuous close-up sex scenes. With lots of spanking and a bit of scissoring. Wehay! One comment from the crowd behind me, “It’s art!” Another, “No, it’s sex!”
This sexy time show happens a few times, peppered with more shots of Adèle’s biscuit filled open gob or pasta guzzling. She’s a messy eater…
A lot of the fellow viewers complained about this predicament, but I thought it a clever technique. Show us this girl in her most vulgar state, and equally Emma’s (blue haired girl) sultry smile, and remind us how love can see through all the ugly!
Another complaint was in all of the ‘unnecessary’ scenes. We see a lot of Adèle in her play school workplace, which admittedly doesn’t do much to advance the story, but does give a realism to the movie. The film could’ve been half the length without these scenes, but then without them we wouldn’t see the complete picture of Adèle’s life.
As her career advances, giving her a role in a primary school, her love life with Emma sinks. The ‘warm’ haired girl is growing bored of Adèle’s lack of creative energy and is growing ever fonder of her fellow artist friend. The shots widen and the blue hair fades with each passing scene.
Adèle’s not stupid, and see’s this love budding with her numerous late nights at the studio. In pursuit of her own pleasure, she hooks up with one of her male colleagues, and when Emma find out, she’s not a happy bunny.
A short domestic ensues, and the once sweetheart is thrown out onto the streets. It’s a cold move from Blue, and hypocritical to say the least.
These scenes, still in close-view are very difficult to watch. The director makes great use of sound in his shots, and the film often goes from loud scenes to silence in an instant.
The sex scenes, for instance, are very noisy, and when they abruptly end we’re left self-consciously wondering how much noise we made our selves, and ‘whoops, did I rock in my chair with those two too?’
When the pair fight, though, this after-silence is even more uncomfortable, and incredibly powerful.
Unsurprisingly, Emma ends up U-Hauling with the artist ‘friend’ and her child, and all is cosy. If only she had that passionate, scissoring, spanking sex with her though. Sigh.
The two meet up for the inevitable awkward first-ex-coffee-date, and end up almost jumping each other on the bar table. Still, no saviour for Adèle as cold, cold Blue walks out and leaves her alone at her wine.
Funnily enough, there’s a lot of wine in this movie. It seems to be a metaphor for family, being pulled out at every familial occasion – ‘meet the parents’, ‘meet the parents two’, and ‘meet all my artsy friends’… it’s pretty fitting then, I guess, that Adèle should be left fermenting at the bar with a glass.
It’s not until Blue’s big fancy pants art exhibition that we see the vino again. This super awky visit marks the formal double french kiss with the new girlfriend (i.e. the devil), and much neck snogging, at which Adèle departs, sullen, depressed, and in a blue dress, no less.
The camera allows us a long shot of her walking away in the ‘warmest colour’, as we contemplate just how ‘chaud’ Emma ever really was.
Credits roll and the lights flicker on… the lesbians arise for libation.
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