Criterion Collection: Three Colors: Blue White Red (Bilingual) [Import]
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Three Colors: Blue, White, Red (Criterion Collection)
Blue is the first, and most somber, installment of the late Polish director Krzysztof Kieslowski's trilogy on liberty, equality, and fraternity, the three principles represented by the colors of the French flag. As the film begins, a car accident claims the life of a well-known composer. His wife, played by Oscar® winner Juliette Binoche, does not so much put the pieces of her life back together as start an entirely new existence. She moves to Paris, where she dissolves into a wordless life virtually without other people. Kieslowski attaches an almost subconscious significance to the color blue, but primarily he focuses on Binoche's luminous face, and the way her subtle shifts in emotion flicker and disappear. The picture may be more enigmatic than its successors, but Binoche's quiet, heartbreaking presence becomes spellbinding; she won the best actress prize for the film at the Venice Film Festival in 1993. --Robert Horton
White is an ironic comedy brimming over with the hard laughs of despair, ecstasy, ambition, and longing, all played in a minor key. Down-and-out Polish immigrant Karol Karol is desperate to get out of France. He's obsessed with his French soon-to-be ex-wife (Before Sunrise's Julie Delpy), his French bank account is frozen, and he's fed up with the inequality of it all. Penniless, he convinces a fellow Pole to smuggle him home in a suitcase--which then gets stolen from the airport. The unhappy thieves beat him and dump him in a snowy rock pit. Things can only get better, right? The story evolves into a wickedly funny antiromance, an inverse Romeo and Juliet. Because it's in two foreign languages, the dialogue can be occasionally hard to follow, but some of the most genuinely funny and touching moments need no verbal explanation. --Grant Balfour
The final section of the trilogy is the least likely of the three to stand alone, and indeed benefits from a little familiarity with the first two parts. Nevertheless, it's a strong, unique piece that reflects upon the ubiquity of images in the modern world and the commensurate subjugation of meaningful communication. Irene Jacob plays a fashion model whose lovely face is hugely enlarged on a red banner no one in Paris can possibly miss seeing. Striking up a relationship with an embittered former judge (Jean-Louis Trintignant), who secretly scans his neighbors' conversations through electronic surveillance, Jacob's character becomes an aural witness to the secret lives of those we think we know. Kieslowski cleverly wraps up the trilogy with a device that brings together the principals of all three films. --Tom Keogh --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
I have never been dissatisfied with a Criterion release. They put the very best into every set. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for a lot of the distribution companies these days, which makes Criterion Collection releases stand well above the rest.
I would recommend these films to anyone interested in film as art, and this box set does great justice to maintaining both the integrity and beauty of this trilogy.
In "Bleu," Julie de Courcy (Juliette Binoche) and her family are in a car accident when their brakes fail, and her husband and daughter are killed. Devastated, she leaves her palatial house in the country after a night with her husband's old friend Olivier (Benoît Régent), who has been in love with her for years. And though Julie tries to leave her old life behind, she is pulled in when Olivier starts to finish her husband's last composition -- and he tells her of a side of her husband that she never knew.
In the bitterly funny "Blanc," hairdresser Karol Karol (Zbigniew Zamachowski) is being coldly divorced by his beautiful wife Dominique (Julie Delpy) because she is sexually dissatisfied with him -- and she takes all his money too. But after returning to Poland, Karol rebuilds his life and fortune, and amid a web of killing, seduction and faked death, he comes up with a way to get back at Dominique...
And "Rouge" is the color of love. On her way home from a modelling session, Valentine (Irene Jacob) accidently injures a pregnant dog. The owner is Joseph Kern, (Jean-Louis Trintignant) an embittered ex-judge whose job has left him spiritually adrift, and who now spends his time wiretapping the phones of his neighbors and predicting what will happen in their lives.Read more ›
It was the first of the trilogy to be released, and I think the strongest of the trilogy, as well as the most rewarding to see by itself.
Juliette Binoche is nothing short of a revelation here. Her performance is so emotionally naked and raw, it is almost hard to watch. Her study of a woman consumed with the loss of her husband and only child is devastating. Binoche is one of those actors that can convey more emotion in a look or an expression than most can with an epic monologue. In fact, what I took away from the film initially is how much was unleashed without really saying much of anything. She is perfect for this role, and it is arguably the best performance of her career thus far, and one in which she won a Cesar award for Best Actress.
The style of the film is totally unique. There are breathtaking moments of genius spread throughout the film. The camera is such a languid yet probing force in Blue, showing you things that are out of view and lending fascinating perspective to the characters. There is a shot I recall in a hospital, when the camera has a tight shot on an eye, only to reveal a doctor looking down to the patient. It is remarkable that these elements do not feel gimmicky at all. They simply become part of the language of the story. The cinematography is just gorgeous. The colors and the use of focus add tension and depth to the visual space, leaving some images behind that are both abstract and precise.
I remember feeling really out of touch when I left the theatre after seeing Blue. It is so cliche, but I really felt like I had been dreaming. The images that I recalled reminded me of the kinds you recall when you wake up from a dream.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
The RED, WHITE and BLUE trilogy refers to the colors of the French flag. This must be a declaration of patriotism or admiration from the films' director, Krzysztof Kieslowski,... Read morePublished on June 3 2003 by Mr. Joe
I saw all three of these movies in the theater in the early 1990s, but it wasn't until I saw them again on the new DVD set that I really appreciated all that they were. Read morePublished on May 29 2003
This review refers to the Three Colors Trilogy(Boxed Set) DVD edition by Miramax.....
To give this trilogy 5 stars hardly begins to express the way I feel about this trilogy. Read more
Great storytelling and a pleasure to watch. Each movie stands out on its own and is easily one of the best trilogies in all of film.Published on April 19 2003
They don't make movies like this all the time, and that's a pity. The late Krzysztof Kieslowski hasn't gotten the acclaim of more prominent but less talented directors like Tom... Read morePublished on April 13 2003 by EA Solinas
There is no reason you should be debating to buy this set if you found your way here. I actually had not seen the trilogy until I purchased this. Read morePublished on April 12 2003 by Jheez
Kieslowski captured my imagination-he inspired me. From the beautiful film Blue through the redemptive Red, these films are a Picasso. Read morePublished on April 10 2003 by emma
Francophile and hopeless romantic that I am, this DVD is timeless and deep. It's definitely one to own if you're a Juliette Binoche fan. Beautifully filmed.Published on March 29 2003
This trilogy is a must see for movie buffs. Surely thought provoking as well as a visual treat. Watch out for Juliet Binoche's sterling performance in this trilogy. Read morePublished on March 28 2003 by Amazon Customer