But hey, let's talk about lighter things today. Or, how long can I actually keep this light.
I had a lovely Christmas holiday, which definitely was needed to make up for all of the shit that happened in December. I'm glad that I was able to keep myself from working on uni assignments too much, and focused on recovery instead. That has paid off and I feel more energized, motivated and inspired than I imagined was possible considering the state I was in. As my favourite tutor said, the drugs are working. And I do believe that is true, they are working.
And there I promised you lighter topics. Let's try again.
Blue is the Warmest Colour (La vie d'Adèle) is one of the best, most earth-shattering, life-altering, mind-blowing film experiences that I have ever had in my entire life. In fact, when people now start discussing films they have seen or want to see, all you can hear from my mouth is "Blue is the warmest colour BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOUR, BLUEISTHEWARMSTCOLOUFHUIKJSFJG..... I recommend you go see it immediately" And then I found out it's only on in a few cinemas in London so I can't go rewatch it.
When I'm this into something I can't discuss it very intelligently - as all of us, who have read my Nightwish themed blogposts, know - but I'll try to briefly introduce some of the most central things about this film - central to me, personally. Bear in mind, some of them are bound to be kind of trivial and superficial details because sometimes those are important as well.
First of all, I just love French cinema, and especially how they deal with realism, but also the Amèlie-like dreamy strangeness. And in some ways this film has both in it. It is very raw, very emotional and feels sincere and real, but still there is something cute and precious about it. Perhaps it's just in the details, like in Emma's blue hair and how Adèle first meets her.
But what really gets me in the cinematography, is how extreme close-up shots take you uncomfortably close the characters and their story. Like, when Adèle eats spaghetti, you can hear her chewing and see bits of the sauce on her lips and chin. How she enjoys the taste but in an absentminded way, watching television at the same time. It's so different to the way in which most of the American dramas are made that in its quotidien (can you even use that word in English?) crudeness, Blue is the Warmest Colour, feels incredibly fresh. And I think that showing the imperfections, the uneven eyeliners of the high-school students, and that when two women have sex they change position every now and then (not always so gracefully) and that they can actually just keep going and going for ages (because women have better stamina than men, and recover faster; true facts), is what makes it all seem so real that you forget it's a fiction. Or maybe it makes you feel so uncomfortable that you have to walk out the door.
It's a bit unfair that the sex in this film has been given so much attention in the media over everything else. It is after all, a 3-hour long film with about 15 minutes of sex scenes (or something like that), and yes, the lesbian sex in this film is very graphic compared to the kind of representation it usually is given (but then again most people haven't seen any French gay films and trust me, that is too much dick for my eyes). But, it is not pornographic, and I think that it is probably one of the least objectified and fetishized lesbian sex scenes that I've seen (compared to L-word for example).
Another thing, kind of an interesting detail, is that in Finland where I went to see this film, the rating was 16 whereas in the UK it's 18 (more fun facts: in France, 12 and in Singapore, 21). But I already have practical experience on the difference in views on nudity between Finland and the UK, so that was not a surprise.
What else? As the original name suggests, Adèle is the main character of the film, and as all the promotional picture material suggests, she is going to meet a girl with blue hair, and fall in love with her. That's Emma. In books and films, the audience is kind of supposed, in some level, to identify with the protagonist because the story is told through their eyes. Usually that works for me because main characters tend not to have particularly distinct personalities that would make empathizing with them even a little, impossible.
However, in this case, I identify so strongly with Emma that I can't feel for Adèle when they clash (towards the end a bit more when she can't let go of Emma because that's basically the story of my past few years). It is a strange feeling to experience such an intimate narrative through eyes that you don't quite feel connected to - you're simultaneously attached to and detached of the story. I don't know how to better explain it.
One of the most telling scenes regarding my attachment to Emma and detachment of Adèle is when they have a party with a lot of Emma's friends from the art world (she's a painter), and Adèle feels out of place because her interests lie in education and more down-to-earth things than abstract art theory. What's funny is that I completely understood all of the art references thus feeling like a part of Emma's inner circle rather than an outsider like Adèle. I even silently mused at one particular reference to a painting, then realizing that my best friend sitting next to me probably missed it completely as she doesn't have such an extensive art education as I do.
- A+++ lesbian representation
- art lesbians
- things make sounds
- people have pores and don't wear makeup all the time
- HOW DID THEY FILM THAT IT LOOKS SO REAL?
- so many emotions
- is it weird that I'm most attracted to the person I most identify with?
- now I want a French lover
- also where are all the lesbian bars? I've never seen a lesbian bar
- they speak French which means I'm really attracted to everyone
- French women are gorgeous
I actually meant to talk about other things as well but doing that would make this post hideously long, and besides now I'm left with a few more light topics for future needs, so best stop here for now.
Just one more thing that is going to improve the quality of my life if only momentarily: weekend in London with ballet, Freud museum, delicious food and one of my closest friends!