DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR (LA VIE D'ADELE) (director/writer: Abdellatif Kechiche; screenwriters: Ghalya Lacroix/adapted from “Le Bleu Est une Couleur Chaude” by Julie Maroh; cinematographer: Sofian El Fani; editors:  Albertine Lastera/Camille Toubkis/Jean-Marie Lengellé /Ms. Lacroix; cast: Léa Seydoux (Emma), Adèle Exarchopoulos (Adèle), Salim Kechiouche (Samir), Mona Walravens (Lise), Jérémie Laheurte (Thomas), Alma Jodorowsky (Béatrice), Sandor Funtek (Valentin); Runtime: 179; MPAA Rating: NC-17; producers: Alcatraz Films/Olivier Thery Lapiney/ Laurence Clerc; Sundance Selects; 2013-France/Belgium/Spain-in French with English subtitles)

"Bold coming-of-age lesbian drama, that makes you care about its young heroine."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Tunisian-born French director Abdellatif Kechiche ("The Secret of the Grain"/"Games of Love and Chance"/"Black Venus") directs this bold coming-of-age lesbian drama, that  makes you care about its young heroine and her search for happiness. It tastefully and artfully dodges sensationalism, and therebytook home the top prize at Cannes. Co-writers Kechiche and Ghalya Lacroix adapt it from the 2010 graphic novel “Le Bleu Est une Couleur Chaude” by Julie Maroh.

Warning: spoiler in next paragraph.

It goes into depth covering the relationship between Lille-residing underage 15-year-old high school student Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos, 19-year-old), who comes from a conservative blue-collar family, and the older, twenty-something blue haired and more cultured, sexually experienced  and mature college art student Emma (Léa Seydoux, 28-year-old). Adèle encounters Emma in a gay bar, and the senior partner initiates the younger girl into her first lesbian affair. The story follows them through an up and down relationship that stretches out to a decade, where they have great intimate sex (the heart of the film). But when Adèle grows lonely after ignored by the career-minded Emma and has casual sex a few times with a male teacher colleague, Emma kicks the tearful Adèle out of her flat and calls her a lying slut.

Adèle gets caught in an ingrained class system that keeps her out of Emma's high-brow bohemian art world, as she settles into a conventional teaching career of young children--a profession she always wanted.

Exarchopoulos and Seydoux shared the acting prize at Cannes for their heartfelt performances, that included graphic intimate lesbian sexual scenes.

REVIEWED ON 12/4/2013       GRADE: A-

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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