Three Colours: Red (1994): “Justice doesn’t deal with the innocent.”

tcrpThe Three Colours trilogy, directed by Krzysztof Kieślowski, consists of three films: Blue (1993), White (1994), and lastly, Red (1994). This conclusion to the trilogy confronts the French Revolutionary ideal of fraternity, or brotherhood. It lays bare the connections between all three films and, true to Kieślowski’s directing style throughout the whole trilogy, is a mesmerising visual feast.

Valentine (Irène Jacob) is a student, model, and dancer whose relationship with her boyfriend is fairly unsteady. One night after working at a fashion show, she is driving home and hits a dog on the road. She seeks out the dog’s owner in order to confess, and find out what she can do to help. After taking the dog to the vet, she returns to the owner’s house, and from this moment on begins a strange friendship with him. Parallel to this story, we are also shown the romantic troubles of Auguste (Jean-Pierre Lorit), a man whose story coincidentally mirrors that of Valentine’s new friend.

I loved Red. It had a very similar tone to Blue, and much less humour than White. It perfectly tied up the threads of the trilogy, not only with its central theme of interconnection and brotherhood, but also in its goosebumps-inducing ending. Irène Jacob is stunning as the doe-eyed Valentine and was a joy to watch. Although the film seemed to have much lower stakes in terms of its central story when compared with the others, the film developed in a steady way that didn’t feel rushed, nor did it meander. I found myself having a genuine interest in the characters, which made its conclusion that much more satisfying.

Throughout the film, your senses are assaulted with the most beautiful visuals and music. As usual, Zbigniew Preisner’s score is absolutely gorgeous and complements the tone of the film perfectly. I was impressed with the cinematography in Red from the very beginning, where there was an inventive sequence that had not yet been used in either of its predecessors. The fact that Red has the perfect score in addition to the beautiful visuals means that anyone with a passion for film aesthetics will find this one fascinating. The following are some of the very iconic shots from the film, as well as a few of my favourites.

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File created with CoreGraphics

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4/5
Watch the trailer here (no English subtitles, unfortunately).

7 comments

  1. […] Kieślowski’s Three Colours Trilogy comprises three films: Blue (1993), White (1994), and Red (1994), based on the famous ideals of the French Revolution: liberty, equality, and fraternity. This is my […]

  2. […] Kieślowski’s Three Colours Trilogy comprises three films: Blue (1993), White (1994), and Red (1994). The three films are based on the famous ideals of the French Revolution: liberty, equality, and […]

  3. Great review of the movie, I really enjoyed reading it! I really loved how the end of the movie tied the whole trilogy together.

    1. I absolutely agree, it was a real goosebumps moment. What an amazing trilogy! Thanks! 🙂

  4. […] ← Three Colours: Red (1994): “Justice doesn’t deal with the innocent.” […]

  5. I agree – Red was a wonderful film! Personally, I enjoyed it by far the most out of the Three Colours Trilogy. And the soundtrack & visuals are both breathtaking.
    I also found that the terse, almost spartan dialogue between Valentine and the judge added to the sense of tension in their relationship to each other – like the following exchange, all in 1-syllable words: “Tu es quoi? Flic?” “Pire – juge.” Quite brilliant!

    1. I think Blue was my favourite, but this one is a very close second! The dialogue is genius. The whole film was constructed so thoughtfully, as was the series as a whole. I want to watch them all again!

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