Louis Garrel

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Louis Garrel - 69th Cannes Film Festival - 'Mal de Pierres' (From the Land of the Moon) - Photocall at Palais de Festivals, Cannes Film Festival - Cannes, France - Sunday 15th May 2016

Louis Garrel
Marion Cotillard, Louis Garrel, Alex Brendemuhl and Nicole Garcia
Marion Cotillard and Louis Garrel
Marion Cotillard, Louis Garrel and Alex Brendemuhl
Marion Cotillard and Louis Garrel
Marion Cotillard and Louis Garrel

Marion Cotillard, Nicole Garcia, Louis Garrel , Alex Brendemuhl - 69th Cannes Film Festival - 'Mal de Pierres' (From the Land of the Moon) - Premiere at Palais de Festivals, Cannes Film Festival - Cannes, France - Sunday 15th May 2016

Marion Cotillard, Nicole Garcia, Louis Garrel and Alex Brendemuhl
Marion Cotillard, Nicole Garcia, Louis Garrel and Alex Brendemuhl
Alex Brendemuhl, Marion Cotillard and Louis Garrel
Marion Cotillard, Nicole Garcia, Louis Garrel and Alex Brendemuhl

Beloved Review


OK
Adventurous French filmmaker Honore returns to the musical genre, but this film isn't as buoyant as the wonderful Les Chansons d'Amour (2007). No, this one is dark and rather grim. And it feels about an hour too long.

In 1964 Riems, Madeleine (Sagnier) accidentally begins moonlighting as a prostitute before falling in love with a client, the charming Czech doctor Jaromil (Bukvic). He whisks her off to Prague, until the Russian invasion of 1968 and Jaromil's infidelity drive her back to France with daughter Vera.

Madeleine remarries, but never loses her feelings for Jaromil. Even some 40 years later (now played by Deneuve and Forman), they're meeting in secret, while Vera (now Mastroianni) is struggling with the fact that she has fallen in love with the wrong man (Schneider).

Continue reading: Beloved Review

Frontier Of Dawn Review


Very Good
In Frontier of Dawn, Philippe Garrel's transfixing follow-up to Regular Lovers, love means being obsessed and obsession is a form of love. At least that's the idea you get from watching how it chronicles a young photographer (Louis Garrel, the director's lean son) who begins with a doomed affair with an actress (the radiant Laura Smet) and ends in an agonizing state of fatalism with a baby on the way. Melancholy, it would seem, is the elder Garrel's native tongue.

Shot in beautiful, shadowy black-and-white and set primarily, as was his previous film, in the hallways and empty rooms of Parisian apartments, Frontier immediately flirts with the romance and nostalgia of the nouvelle vague. This is not completely surprising as Garrel is perhaps the most unsung hero of that particular movement, only seeing a renewed interest upon the release of Lovers in 2006. But unlike a great deal of his other work, Frontier features bouts of picaresque fantasy that are reminiscent of Bresson and Dreyer.

Continue reading: Frontier Of Dawn Review

Love Songs Review


Good
Christopher Honore's Love Songs is an atmosphere of dalliance without any real characters to speak of. It's a light and playful story about sex and love but doesn't really say anything specific about either one. The actors, all proven performers, walk through it with a flirtatious candor, but never let in on what they're after or what they're flirting with besides each other. It so badly wants to be revisionist Godard but it ends up sub-Lelouch at best. Even so, the talented, young director floors it and manages to evade worn-out sexual archetypes with a gleeful glint in his eye.

Has a director ever gone so 180 as Honore, last seen offering the inside-out Dans Paris. Love Songs, his third and weakest film, builds on an endlessly-trampled possibility: Is it conceivable to have a relationship with three people where everyone happily coexists? As always, there's a couple at the middle, Ismaël (Louis Garrel) and Julie (Ludivine Sagnier), who are happy and in love but want to try their luck with another person. Enter Alice (Regular Lovers' Clotilde Hesme), a co-worker of Ismaël's. Alice and Julie fool around, and so do Alice and Ismaël, but Julie is unsatisfied with the experiment, which might explain why she shares the news with her entire family.

Continue reading: Love Songs Review

Dans Paris Review


Very Good
Can we take a moment and talk about Romaine Duris? Not to stray away from the subject of film, but where did this guy come from? The first time I saw him was in a film called L'Auberge Espagnole back in 2003, playing a humdrum student abroad living with a bevy of bodacious babes and a few quixotic chaps in a Spanish apartment. As it were, he also ended up in an American film that very year, James Ivory's vastly underrated Le Divorce. Impressions were made and when his name made a cast list, an interested "hmph" pressed its way out of my vocal chords. Then Jacques Adiard's The Beat That My Heart Skipped came out, and things changed.

Adiard's film wasn't just a great movie; it was a fully-functional jive. What still haunts me is the way Duris moved along to every funky camera move and dynamic scene with such disheveled, transcendent grace. The movie itself breathed in unison with Duris', performance making it easily the best French remake of a movie starring Harvey Keitel ever.

Continue reading: Dans Paris Review

Ma Mère Review


OK
At some point, there won't be any taboos left to ostensibly shatter, and what will French imports do then? Ma Mère is the newest Gallic provocation to come to these shores, though unlike some others (the dismal Anatomy of Hell, say) it has actually been paid attention to by the ratings board, thusly the NC-17 for "strong and aberrant sexual content." The aberrance this time isn't just the coital mingling of older women and younger men (a la last year's The Piano Teacher, which also starred Isabelle Huppert) but also incest, just for kicks. The idea was controversial enough when it was used in the film's source, the titular 1960s Georges Bataille novel, but here it's more likely to cause yawns than outrage.

The strapping youth whom the film places at the intersecting desires of three women is Pierre (Louis Garrel), a somewhat idle guy who, after his father's mysterious death, gets sucked into the orbit of his self-destructive mother, Helène (Huppert). This involves a lot of gamesmanship whereby Helène tries to push Pierre into more and more outlandish behavior, especially with her wastrel friend Réa (Joane Preiss), whom she's more than a little chummy with. At first, Helène pushes Pierre towards Réa, seemingly as a way of having one-degree-of-separation sex with him, watching longingly as Réa screws Pierre in public, blasé strangers wandering past. It's easy to see why these three are pushing themselves to such extremes, given the film's bland setting in the Grand Canaries - with its California-like, mildly libidinous atmosphere and constant, enervating sunlight. But unfortunately that doesn't mean there's much depth to it at all, no matter how much philosophical and religious piffle writer/director Christophe Honoré puts into Pierre's portentous voiceovers.

Continue reading: Ma Mère Review

The Dreamers Review


Excellent
It's unfortunate that, far too often, the audience for a film is based on marketing hype, and therefore doesn't interact with the material on a more personal level. Bernardo Bertolucci is especially infamous for making films that contain explicit sexual content, and the combination of this renown and an NC-17 rating has had critics flocking to The Dreamers, if only to see how much shock value has been created.

But appreciating The Dreamers has nothing to do with pushing the audience in directions they shirk from. The sex and nudity, while physically bare to the eye, come more from the standpoint of natural innocence than pornographic prowess. The added connotations towards incest have also had people bubbling at the mouth. However, if you are able to ignore all these preconceptions, The Dreamers becomes a simple, and beautifully crafted, story of three individuals who test each other and themselves for a short period of time.

Continue reading: The Dreamers Review

The Dreamers Review


Weak

The last five minutes of Bernardo Bertolucci's "The Dreamers" is a sublimely spot-on graduation for its main character, an unripe American student on a proverbial journey of self-discovery in this erotic drama set against the backdrop of the 1968 Paris riots.

But in the preceding five reels, there isn't much I'd call compelling in its story of a trio of 20-year-old bohemian wannabe-intellectuals who have yet to be comfortable with their own identities, yet frequently launch into polemic and nebulously philosophical pontifications about politics and movies.

The narrating young drifter named Matthew (pouty, ambiguous Michael Pitt from "Hedwig and the Angry Inch") answers the siren song of Isbelle (Eva Green) and Theo (Louis Garrel), a pair of alluringly charismatic, possibly incestuous fraternal twins who invite the American to live in their large, labyrinthine flat for the summer while their bourgeoisie, former poet-bohemian parents are away on holiday.

Continue reading: The Dreamers Review

Louis Garrel

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Louis Garrel Movies

Beloved Movie Review

Beloved Movie Review

Adventurous French filmmaker Honore returns to the musical genre, but this film isn't as buoyant...

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Dans Paris Movie Review

Dans Paris Movie Review

Can we take a moment and talk about Romaine Duris? Not to stray away from...

The Dreamers Movie Review

The Dreamers Movie Review

It's unfortunate that, far too often, the audience for a film is based on marketing...

The Dreamers Movie Review

The Dreamers Movie Review

The last five minutes of Bernardo Bertolucci's "The Dreamers" is a sublimely spot-on graduation for...

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