Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Film Review--Blue

starring Juliet Binoche, Benoit Regent, and Pepe Le Pew as "The Beav."

Julie (Binoche) is the wife of a famous French composer.  She suddenly becomes widowed as both her husband and her daughter are killed in a car accident.   Julie attempts to piece her life back together as best she can, but begins to discover that her husband was not the man she thought he was all this time.  While free to live anew, Julie keeps finding people and things from the past crashing back into her life.

At first blush, this may not seem like the kind of film that I would review on this blog.  But this is art.  Purely, plainly, simply, this is film as art.  Director
Krzysztof Kieslowski is the man.  I mean just "the man."  The luscious cinematography, the unending symbolism in his shots...I could go on and on about it.  It's just such a visual narrative, one that hypnotizes you from the very beginning.  There is a saying in art, "never a line without a reason."  Similarly in literature, Chekov had his rule about a gun hanging above the fireplace. 

Here, there is nothing superfluous, nothing surfeit.  Nearly everything has meaning and has a purpose for being in the shot.  All of this allows Kieslowski to build a nearly perfect study of Julie's character.  We see this so seldom in film, when a character becomes fully realized as a person and you identify with them...or at least understand their choices...in total.  This is not to say that Kieslowski embraces sumpsimus.  Not at all.  His means of going about this portrayal inventive and captivating (just watch for the sugar cube.)  Typically with a cerebral drama such as this, especially one that is subtitled, I expect to zone out from time to time.  Sad product of the American fast food-mass media culture, I suppose. Blue never once lost my attention and I intend to add it to my collection.

This film was the first installment in a trilogy that Kieslowski named Tres Colores.  I now have two more films to see.

My e-novella Hound of Winter is now available on Smashwords for just 99 cents!

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