french films > Bluebeard




Review score: * * * * *

cast: Thomas, Lola Creton, Daphné Baïwir

year: 2010

colour: yes

certificate: -15

director: Catherine Breillat

runtime: 80

"Ann, my sister Ann, Can you see anyone coming?"

Marie-Catherine (Lola Creton) and her elder sister Anne (Daphne Baiwir) are sent home from there convent school after their father dies. Now impoverished, the only hope for the family is in one of the girls finding a husband. The notorious Bluebeard (Dominique Thomas) is looking for a new wife and organises an event for interested potential brides to attend. Remarkably given his reputation as a murderer of women there is a reasonable turnout.

Bluebeard is charmed by the fearless Marie-Catherine who rather likes his blue beard and shows a disarming honesty towards him. They marry and Bluebeard tells his child bride that as long as she continues to be honest no harm will come to her. However Bluebeard has a golden key to a door with his dark secret hidden inside and he insists she must obey him and never open it.

Breillat frames the story with modern-day sequences in which a young girl called Catherine (Marilou Lopes-Benites) reads Perrault's story to her older sister Marie-Ann (Lola Giovanetti) delighting in scaring her. The 5-year old Lopes-Benites is astonishing, a little force of nature with a gift for comedy. There is plenty of humour in these sequences as the girls try to understand the troubling themes present in Perrault's story.


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