I don’t know if you’ve heard of this movie “Blue is the Warmest Color” but I just watched all 3 hours of it and was simply and utterly amazed.
Cinematic. Orgasm. Put the words together or separately, it doesn’t matter. You might of heard of the film because it won the Palm d’Or in Cannes or you might have heard about because it’s been called pornographic with an NC-17 rating or you might have even heard about it because the sex scenes are predominantly two women but whatever you heard about it, go see it.
Just see it.
Quite literally and without guile I have never been as moved and felt so utterly close to someone I neither know or have ever met than I was with this movie…all 3 hours of it…and I became enthralled and unknowingly but intimately aware of and indelibly connected to Adele, the lead character. Adèle Exarchopoulos is indescribably fantastic—this is quite simply the performance of the year, really. The film is about desire; desire to eat, desire to sleep with someone, desire to live a life that won’t be regretted…and it is portrayed within a relationship between two women. We get to see without artifice or contrived scenario what it is to live through the arc of that relationship, regardless the gender of the protagonists. The two women are incredibly real—or what I imagine is real as the story never rounded to perfection, never uttered a false note—and there were amusing little French jokes interspersed between an extremely and very emotionally demanding relationship that had me gasping in spots.
But the sex…
I’m not going to hedge or pretend to some morality I do not believe in and kind of, sort of, maybe yes, maybe no, mention that I’ve seen porn before because quite frankly I’ve seen a lot. I like porn in fact but this is not porn. Despite its NC-17 rating, this is not porn but an utterly honest and laid bare portrayal of the world real people live in and that world includes messy, vibrant, gasping, sweating, incredibly erotic, discomforting, last too long/too short sex. We’re all big boys and girls here so this is something that we can talk about…the sex scenes will doubtlessly make some uncomfortable; such authenticity—heterosexual or homosexual—is something rarely if ever seen on screen, but they are neither gratuitous nor pornographic. There’s nothing more gratuitous than the old lie that’s been told throughout cinematic history of woman as a passive sexual being, and the women in this film are anything but passive.
What you do see is that aside from the initial erotic jolt of seeing real lesbian sex (exciting and new and incredibly hot), lesbian sex is also as mundane and banal as heterosexual sex can be and if you care to be honest (and have met Mr. Reality once or twice in your life), you watch with deep fascination and a sense of dread for it to end. Dread because you’re watching something literally honest (and how often do we get that chance…really).
There is no money shot with this sex because out here in the real world there is never a money shot…it’s work all day feed the kids do the wash check homework file a report send emails oh my god I’m so tired honey mind if we skip tonight oh okay then make it quick sex.
No money shot there.
The best thing about the movie though (and I have to say it again and again) is Adèle Exarchopoulos. Her performance is an extraordinary accomplishment, she shows every possible emotion: indifference, astonishment, grief, anger, joy, sadness, and yes, sexual excitement, without once giving the impression that the emotion is not real, that she is just acting. In fact, Adèle is in 95% of the scenes and often her face fills the screen…we see her sleeping, thinking, staring into the distance, eating, drinking smoking and all the while seemingly alive and living right before our eyes.
Put the words together or separately…
…it doesn’t matter.