Based on a graphic novel of the same name by Julie Maroh, Blue is the Warmest Colour (2013, dir. Abdellatif Kechiche) tells the story of Adèle, a high school student who is blossoming into adulthood. Adèle has a fairly regular life, she enjoys studying and has some good friends and a potential boyfriend. One day, she spies a young woman with bright blue hair crossing the street and is captivated by her. This small occurrence changes her life from then on. Blue is the Warmest Colour is a true epic film in the very sense of the word, telling the story of Adèle’s life as it changes and develops over a number of years, and also the development of her love with blue-haired Emma.
This is my second post on this fantastic film. I reviewed Blue is the Warmest Colour earlier this year for an “Is it worth paying for a ticket?” post, and eventually ruled that yes, this film is absolutely worth seeing in cinemas. (Not going to lie, that first paragraph is ripped from this previous review.) I absolutely loved it. I recently re-watched it at home, and firstly, I can confirm that if you feel awkward watching a really long sex scene in a dark cinema with relative anonymity, you have no idea how awkward it is to watch it with six other people in your own living room. However, secondly and more importantly, the art and sheer brilliance of this film is not dulled at all by watching it on the small screen. In fact, re-watching this film allowed me to consider its creative elements more comprehensively.
Director Abellatif Kechiche was by all means completely obsessive when making this film, shooting hundreds of hours of film, with certain scenes taking more than a week to finish. But as I said in my previous review, this obsessiveness has 100% paid off, and what has resulted is a film that looks extremely well put together; both in terms of the thoughtfulness of its construction, and also its aesthetic appeal. Upon re-watch, I noticed that the film is heavy on not only the use of the colour blue (who would have guessed?), but also the idea of mirroring experiences, both through actual mirrors and reflective glass. This idea of mirroring is also shown through shots that replicate earlier moments with slight changes, and mirroring scenes to contrast social and political views. The way this film is put together is genius.
Here are some of my favourite shots from Blue is the Warmest Colour. I could seriously include every single shot from this film in a cinematography post because the whole thing is shot so artfully and expressively (although that may depend on your interpretation of the film’s numerous sex scenes). Not only are the performances by Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux absolutely amazing, but the film itself is constructed in such a visually perfect way that balances their extreme talent. I’ve mixed up these images so that the plot isn’t spoiled but please beware of potential spoilers if you haven’t yet seen this amazing film!
(Warning: there’s a little bit of artistic nudity in this post, but nowhere near the level of nudity in the film!)
Watch the trailer here.
Watch this film at Amazon!