La vie d’Adèle (Blue Is the Warmest Color)
Winter 2014 wWednesday series
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 at 7:00pm
Directed by Abdellatif Kechiche
Screenplay by Abdellatif Kechiche and Ghalia Lacroix
Based on the book by Julie Maroh
Starring Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos,, and Salim Kechiouche
Rated R ·
France / Belgium / Spain
La vie d’Adèle (Blue Is the Warmest Colour)
Written and directed by Abdelatif Kechiche (Secret of the Grain), Blue Is the Warmest Colour centers on a 15-year-old girl named Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos) who is approaching adulthood and dreams of experiencing her first love. A handsome male classmate falls for her hard, but an unsettling erotic reverie upsets the romance before it begins. Adèle imagines that the mysterious, blue-haired girl she encountered in the street slips into her bed and possesses her with an overwhelming pleasure. That blue-haired girl is a confident older art student named Emma (Léa Seydoux – Midnight in Paris, The Grand Budapest Hotel), who will soon enter Adèle’s life for real, making way for an intense and complicated love story that spans a decade and is touchingly universal in its depiction.
Loosely based on a graphic novel by Julie Maroh, the film spans a brief but tumultuous period in Adèle’s life, from her last years of high school till some time later, when she is a twentysomething adult pursuing a career as a teacher. But it is really about a defining relationship, told from the point of view of one of its participants. This is the story of Adele’s first love, the pain and the magnificence of all the insecurity, joy and self-discovery that goes along with that, right up to the relationship’s end and beyond.
Blue Is the Warmest Colour won the grand prize at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, an honour shared, in a historic first, by the director and his two stars.
“For all the hype and controversy the movie has since engendered (the sex scenes, Kechiche’s threats of a lawsuit against Seydoux for the actress’ troubling allegations of psychological abuse), there’s no getting around the fact that this is a remarkable work. Blue Is the Warmest Color explores a life with a depth and force that would be scary – if it weren’t so scarily good.” (Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer)
“Some might argue that Kechiche depicts too much of the sex. This is quite possibly true, and yet a great film is a delicate alchemy, and I would not tamper with it. Certainly, the memory of the intimacy informs how we watch the rest of the film, lending it an extra depth of feeling that might not have been there. Their intimacy is not only something they’ve been through – we’ve gone through it with them – and in the end, it’s the nakedness and abandon of the emotions, not the sex, that stays with us days later. You may have heard lots of things about this film, but the most important thing to know is that Blue Is the Warmest Color is a masterpiece, the first of 2013, and the most emotionally moving film to come along in years.” (Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle)
“Blue is the Warmest Color is a masterpiece of human warmth, empathy and generosity, because in a mere three hours, it gives you a whole new life to have lived.” (Jessica Kiang, The Playlist)