Portrait de la jeune fille en feu [Portrait of a Lady on Fire] (2019)

Portrait de la jeune fille en feu
Director: Céline Sciamma
Writer: Céline Sciamma
Cast: Noémie Merlant, Adèle Haenel, Luàna Bajrami, Valeria Golino
Seen on: 16.12.2019

Plot:
Marianne (Noémie Merlant) is a painter. She gets hired to paint the portrait of Héloïse (Adèle Haenel). It’s supposed to be her wedding portrait and Héloïse has so far refused to be painted by all of the (male) painters who came before. So Marianne is under strict orders to not tell Héloïse of her job, but just spend time with her and then paint her from memory. When Marianne arrives, she finds Héloïse a fasinating portrait subject, but even more than that, a fascinating woman.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a beautiful, unusual film telling an epic love story in stunning images. It did take me two attempts to get into it, but once I did, I absolutely loved it.

The film poster showing Héloïse (Adèle Haenel) standing in the dark, the bottom of her long dress on fire.
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Escape from L.A. (1996)

Escape from L.A.
Director: John Carpenter
Writer: John Carpenter, Debra Hill, Kurt Russell
Sequel to: Escape from New York
Cast: Kurt Russell, Steve Buscemi, Peter Fonda, Cliff Robertson, Valeria Golino, Stacy Keach, Pam Grier, Bruce Campbell, Georges Corraface, Michelle Forbes, A.J. Langer, Ina Romeo, Peter Jason, Leland Orser
Seen on: 26.5.2016

Plot:
2013. The future. After an earthquake, Los Angeles was turned into an island, separated from the rest of the USA, and used as a deportation station, not only for illegal immigrants, but also for people who lost their citizenship because they didn’t conform to the ultra-conservative morality enforced by the government. But the President’s own daughter Utopia (A.J. Langer) rebels against him and manages to get stranded in L.A. with a deadly device. Fortunately it’s just then that Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell) is caught once more and threatened with deportation himself – unless he retrieves both Utopia and the weapon.

Well. Since I wasn’t particularly taken with the first Escape film, it is not surprising that I didn’t love the second one either – a film that is inferior in almost every way to its predecessor.

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Les beaux gosses [The French Kissers] (2009)

Les beaux gosses is the first movie by director/writer Riad Sattouf, starring Vincent Lacoste, Anthony Sonigo and Alice Trémolière (and in very small role: Valeria Golino).

Plot:
Hervé (Vincent Lacoste) spends most of his time with his best friend Camel (Anthony Sonigo) dreaming about the girls in school, especially Aurore (Alice Trémolière). One day, Aurore actually talks to him and a friendship starts to develop between them. Over the course of a year, we see their development.

Les beaux gosses is funny and sweet and I had a good time watching it. It’s not the world’s best movie, but it is good entertainment. The cast was great, most of them newcomers with some better known actors in supporting roles. What I found sadly lacking though was the female perspective.

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