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Blue Is the Warmest Colour


Year: 2013 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: Unknown 
Certificate: BBFC 18 Cert – Not suitable for under 18s 
Subtitles: It is expected that this film is fully subtitled. 
Directed by Abdellatif Kechiche 
Starring: Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Salim Kechiouche  

Blue Is the Warmest Colour is based on a French graphic novel entitled Blue Angel and is directed by French director Abdellatif Kechiche. The film centres on Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos), a bright schoolgirl with ambitions of being a teacher, who is hoping to experience her first love. After a painful breakup with a boyfriend she accompanies a gay friend to a bar, and sees a beautiful young woman there with short dyed blue hair. Adèle has seen her before in the street; she is an older art student and her name is Emma (Lea Séydoux). Soon Adèle and Emma begin an intense and passionate affair.

This film has gained a lot of attention for the performances of its leads, as well as its long and graphic sex scenes. Ultimately, it is a very intimate and raw film that provides a true departure from the typical Hollywood portrayals of love and sex. It won the Palme d�or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival and was the first film in which the prize was awarded to both the director and lead actresses. Both actresses have since spoken of the grueling nature of Kechiche�s direction; stating that particularly emotional scenes were continuously reshot until they themselves felt delusional.

Nevertheless, the breakout performance of Exarchopoulos has been particularly praised, largely due to the range she displays from the highs of first love to tear-drenched loss. When watching this film, it almost feels like real time and you cannot help feeling incredibly involved in its story. It is definitely worth watching even for its performances alone.

Olivia Lynch

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Screenings of this film:

2013/2014 Spring Term (digital)