Blue Is the Warmest Color

Blue won the Palme d’Or at Cannes in May 2013, after which it was commercially released in France and the US in October and in the UK in November. So why are we only seeing it on the big screen now? Probably all the red tape between the film’s distributor and the MDA, which rejected the original cut due to the extensive—both in terms of duration and, um, variety—lesbian sex scenes. In case you were wondering (of course you were), these by-now-infamous scenes won’t be in the local version. But the film is pretty solid nonetheless. Exarchopoulos plays a baby-faced, sensitive homebody who loves to cook—a stock Cancerian, really—who crosses paths with blue-haired compulsive flirt Seydoux and falls in love. The resulting tenderness and trials will resonate with just about anyone who’s ever been in a serious relationship. But, although stirring, the portrayal of their relationships doesn’t quite break new ground. Nonetheless it’s worth a watch if you can sit through a rather slow three-hour film, if only because it’s so rare to see female pleasure so sensitively handled in cinema. There’s a particularly stirring scene in a café that somehow conveys sexual ecstasy and emotional agony simultaneously—it’s like nothing else we’d ever seen.