A Burning Hot Summer 2012 UNRATED

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(8) IMDb 5/10
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The latest searing drama from French master Garrel (Regular Lovers) loosely evokes Godard's Contempt, as a once-happy marriage between a brooding painter (Louis Garrel) and his movie-star wife (Monica Bellucci) hits the rocks.

Starring:
Monica Bellucci, Louis Garrel
Runtime:
1 hour 36 minutes

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A Burning Hot Summer

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Product Details

Genres Drama
Director Philippe Garrel
Starring Monica Bellucci, Louis Garrel
Supporting actors Céline Sallette, Jérôme Robart, Vladislav Galard, Vincent Macaigne, Maurice Garrel, Benjamin Abitan, Julien Bouanich, Romain Canonne, Jean-Charles Clichet, Rodolphe Congé, Grégory Fitoussi, Jean-Luc Guillotin, Cyrille Hertel, Frédéric Noaille, Alexandre Pallu, Eric Seigne
Studio IFC Films
MPAA rating Unrated
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
With its incendiary title and its provocative DVD cover, it might be easy to mistake Philippe Garrel's new "A Burning Hot Summer" for a racy and hot-blooded melodrama. Instead, the film is a quintessential French character piece that has a moody aloofness that should be familiar to anyone that has sampled Garrel's other works. A quartet of friends struggle with relationships, debate political theory, and mainly just exist in an isolated world of idealism and hypocrisy. This "hot summer," therefore, is punctuated by inaction, extended silences, and a rather mundane ordinariness for much of the picture. This is not a movie made for audiences expecting big moments or actions, but one that succeeds on a smaller story which relies heavily on the things that people leave unsaid.

At heart, "A Burning Hot Summer" tells the story of two interwoven relationships. Louis Garrel (the filmmaker's son and frequent leading man) and Monica Bellucci play an established married couple that appear to have it all. He's a successful painter that seems perpetually disinterested in the world around him and she's a rising movie actress. They are joined for an open-ended visit by his new friend (Jerome Robart) accompanied by a recent girlfriend (Celine Sallette). What initially seems a tranquil holiday starts to grow a bit rockier. The fledgling couple start to realize that all is not perfect in the marriage of their friends. And as sides are drawn, it threatens the new bond they have. Although Garrel comes across as perpetually tortured and is the frequent initiator of any perceived drama, he is still undeniably fascinating to the more innocent Robart (whom as the narrator has already claimed the two were best friends).
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Format: DVD
Don't be misled by the title, the box cover photo, or the trailer: "A Burning Hot Summer" (ABHS) is not a titillating French sex farce or lighthearted romp through the sheets. It is a serious film about relationships, love and marriage in today's modern secular society. The setting is Europe, but the social mores of the main characters will be familiar to those who live in secular regions of the United States.

The film focuses on two couples, one which may be nearing the end of the relationship and one which may be beginning. As the two couples face challenges to their relationships, and as the four characters interact with each other, a variety of important questions get explored. Is it possible or desirable to have a lifetime monogamous relationship, and if not, should one bother entering into a serious relationship? Why get married or divorced? How should couples handle infidelity? Does a one-night stand mean anything? The rules of the relationship game have changed drastically since the 1950s, and yet the new rules are not necessarily established or well known. In fact, there are a few scenes in which the old rules, including those of organized religion, make an appearance, and it is clear that the characters don't quite know what to do or where to turn for answers.

The older couple in the established relationship, portrayed by Monica Bellucci and Louis Garrel, have the money and the freedom to be able to do mostly as they please. And yet at times Louis Garrel's character Frederic says he wants a committed traditional relationship with his wife, although he doesn't always behave in a manner conducive to that goal.
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Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
first, the soundtrack is most interesting...second, the honesty of the relationships is most interesting...the scenes are long and I felt immersed in the personalities...and thus the tensions....more so than in movies where switch,switch, switch, from one cut to the next leaves me feeling outside of the feeling...all of this by way of saying the movie may seem slow to some viewers... and in the end I'm not sure the ending is earned...still, it's better and more interesting than so many films... worth watching... be patient....
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Geraldine Ahearn TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 12, 2012
Format: Amazon Instant Video
A couple who were once very much in love and happy got married. At first their marriage was going good with love and passion. But then, the husband who is a painter begins to have struggles and challenges with his movie-star wife. Before you know it, their marriage begins to fall apart. Acting Performance Excellent, and the story holds your interest from start to finish. Overall, Enjoyable and Entertaining. Highly Recommended!
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