Blue Is The Warmest Color (La Vie d’Adèle) [2013] ★★½

blue-is-the-warmest-color-posterEvaluating any movie is a matter of personal taste. Filmmakers who deal in the extreme naturally provoke extreme reactions. That’s one of the reasons why Abdel Latif Kechiche’s “La Vie d’Adèle” won the Palme D’or at this year’s Cannes Festival. Some people at the screening I attended thought it was brilliant. I respect that and I certainly wouldn’t say anything negative about Adele Exarchopoulos’s vivid performance as the title character, a young woman who meets and falls in love with Emma, a confident college student with blue hair (Lea Seydoux, equally good). What made the movie controversial are the three sex scenes (one of them goes on for almost 7 minutes) and the fact that Julie Maroh, the author of the graphic novel, criticized it for being “pornographic”. That didn’t seem to bother director Abdel Latif Kechiche, who probably enjoyed all the controversy surrounding his film and who probably deliberately designed it to provoke and upset audiences. He certainly orchestrates his story with great skill and it shows. And if one is to judge a film by how well it fulfills its intentions, then “La Vie d‘Adèle “ is a success. It stands out from the crowd by dint of sheer audaciousness. But on an intellectual basis, I thought it was pointless. And on an emotional level, I found it a complete turn-off. I would hate to contradict the Cannes Film Festival jury, or some critics who saw the movie there and sang its praises to the skies, but I respectfully disagree. I still admire the performances and the many memorable passages, but overall the story left me wanting more. So much more.

Rating: 2.5/4

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