An Affair of Love
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The premise is simple: a woman puts an ad in a magazine advertising a sexual fantasy she has that she wants to act out. Her intent is to have a purely sexual affair, no names, no details of every day life, no mess. A man answers her ad, shows up to meet her at a cafe, and they decide to go forward to this mysterious place they will create together, alone.
They begin to meet weekly at a hotel, and sometimes first at the cafe. They stumble over emotions which crop up here and there, and have trouble deciding whether or not to stay in each other's company for a drink after their liasions, whether to let Him drive Her home. They have the drink. She opts for the Metro. They do this dance of uncomfortable union around each otber.
I give this movie Five stars for really incredible acting, as well as nice use of color and style (ie: deep, dark reds (for the hallway in the hotel), subdued blues (for the room, which we don't get to see at first, but which becomes open more and more to us as the couple's relationship progresses), nice shots of the cafe, the streets in the rain, etc). I found both stars highly magnetic and attractive, and very, very expressive. The man carried his heart in his eyes, and they reflected the joy he felt with her, the intense sorrow, the restless erotic anticipation. In turn, the woman's mannerisms and movements seemed to reflect the stages of their relationship.
This film is a must-see for fans of modern World Cinema. It played at the Seattle International film festival, where Nathalie Baye won an award for Best Actress.
I longed for this DVD and just received it from Amazon last week.
But to my disappointment is was a CENSORED version, for the american audiences: Ten minutes were cut from the original european version! All the sexually explicit scenes were banned (true: the movie still keeps it's atmosphere).
I never tought I was ordering a 'clean movies' version.
I'd rather have ordered it from Amazon.fr (integral full-version, with english subtitles)
"She" (Nathalie Baye), a mid-fortyish, confident, unattached woman, felt the need to realize a sexual phantasm. To this end, she placed a classified ad in a pornographic journal (or was it on the internet?). "He" (Sergi Lopez), a handsome man, ten years her junior, answered it. Now sitting at two different locations, they recall their adventure to an unseen man, answering his questions, as the camera goes back and forth between the two characters. Their descriptions of the circumstances which lead to their first meeting are remarkable by their lack of consistency. But, if their recollections of specific facts have grown vague, the strong emotions engendered by their love for each other and their tragic break-up are still very much alive. The rest of the story is presented in a series of flashbacks, interspersed with the characters' comments to the interviewer.
In spite of their national origins, young Belgium director Frederic Fonteyne and Iranian scenarist Philippe Blasband have managed to create the quintessential French film: a film created for adults, with a theme to match, unusual maybe, but still taken out of "real" life, psychological, philosophical and challenging to the viewer.Read more ›
The protagonists coyly named (or not named, really) Her (Nathalie Baye, luminous and oozing with humanity) and Him (Sergi Lopez, slightly menacing, slit-eyed, friendly) meet each other through an ad for the sole purpose of having sex once a week. Very Adult, Very French, Very Non- Committed: they go into the affair with their eyes open, their bodies available and willing and their hearts closed.
The affair is conducted very much like a fencing match: each one advancing, looking for a reaction and retreating when there is none or not the one they want. It is very apparent to us that they are in love about half way through the film even though they do not know each other's name or anything about each other's life. Is this possible, does this make sense? Oh yes. Loved played at this kind of level is what Her calls: Ivory Tower Love. Love of the highest, though not the deepest order.
Director Frederic Fonteyne's mise en scene is bursting with the beauty of the Eiffel Tower area of Paris: cars buzzing by, café's busy with customers drinking espresso and red burgundies and eating plates of cheese and sausages and he throws Him and Her into all of this with the see-all camerawork style of cinema verite'.
"An Affair of Love" ends with a huge sigh: not of relief but a sigh of lost chances and wasted opportunities: it is thoughtful, it is real, it is ultimately full of sorrow and regret.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If this is supposed to have any kind of story line it is not apparent.Published 18 months ago by D. Coonts
An amazing look at how a man & a woman each perceive their love affair, how outside events affect it & it's out come.Published on January 5, 2014 by Melissa Kent
Passable. Another movie that was supposed to be very good but failed. Doubt very much if it grossed much money.Published on July 19, 2013 by Lindsay Gamble
There are other reviews here which describe the plot, so I won't repeat it. I found this a disappointing and unsatisfying film, for two reasons. Read morePublished on August 28, 2011 by Stefan43
most boring movie ever
I don't know why I bought this - couldn't get through it - not even ok for playing guitar along - too silly.
I was expecting a sexy movie, but it was so much more. It was an interesting (non-pretentious) look at sex, love and expectation. Read morePublished on January 28, 2011 by k the grad student
From writer Phillipe Blasband and director Frederic Fonteyne, a bold, adult romance about a man and woman whose intense, anonymous sexual relationship unexpectedly turns into love. Read morePublished on March 4, 2010 by Robin Simmons