The Dreamers (Original Uncut NC-17 Version)
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From Academy Award®-winning director Bernardo Bertolucci (The Last Emperor, 1987), comes an erotic tale of three young film lovers brought together by their passion for movies -- and each other. When Isabelle and Theo (Eva Green, Louis Garrel) invite Matthew (Michael Pitt) to stay with them, what begins as a casual friendship ripens into a sensual voyage of discovery and desire in which nothing is off limits and anything is possible. Featuring an engaging, seductive cast, The Dreamers is a ?spellbinding, provocative feast!" (Ebert & Roeper)
Though The Dreamers is rife with naked flesh, the DVD extras focus more on history and politics--one featurette describes the student unrest of May 1968, which led to national strikes (at one point, 10 million workers were on strike); Gilbert Adair, who adapted the screenplay from his novel, describes the lingering smell that hung over Paris from uncollected garbage and residual tear gas. A making-of featurette is impressively in-depth, richly exploring the intersection of cinema, politics, and sex in director Bernardo Bertolucci's mind. Then the commentary track itself features three different perspectives: Bertolucci focuses on the philosophical and aesthetic underpinnings of the film, Adair discusses its relationship to his own experience in 1968 and the process of adaptation, and producer Jeremy Thomas lays out a more logistical perspective on the making of the movie. All in all, a dense and fertile exploration of the movie's development. The NC-17 cut is the version that played in theaters. --Bret Fetzer
- NC-17 version
- Commentary by director Bernardo Bertolucci, writer Gilbert Adair, and producer Jeremy Thomas
- "Events of May '68" featurette
- "The Making of The Dreamers" featurette
- Michael Pitt "Hey Joe" music video
- Theatrical trailer(s)
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Top Customer Reviews
-First off, if you're offended, in any way, by frontal nudity from either sex... caution: it contains a lot!
-For some, if the ending is a chief factor in deciding that you like a movie, it is possible you could be dissapointed (it ends in an unlikely manner). But if you can appreciate the ending, it doesn't hurt the film at all... Maybe people were disappointed by the ending because they didn't want it to end :)
-If not accustomed to slower-moving movies, based on a load of story depth or the like opposed to action or thiller movies, then it could be a let down.
But the cons are heavily outweighed by the pros...
-For film buffs, Bertolucci doesn't dissapoint. The b/w segments intermingled within the storyline are anything short of genius and, for me, was the most beautiful and spellbinding part of this movie.
-For anti-censorship viewers, this movie could seem to be sent from heaven, because it doesn't leave much out.
-The acting is on a par with almost perfection, all three main characters are played flawlessly and completely take on the people they are supposed to evoke... Eva Green is especially amazing.
-The soundtrack is excellent as well. The tone that the music sets is completely appropriate and only adds to the dreamy atomsphere of the film; totally reminiscent of the 60's.
-A perfect representation of Paris in the 60's; eventhough the film's centerpoint is the main characters and their relationship with one another, the artist's home of Europe couldn't be portrayed to be more gorgeous (with the exception of the student riots in foreground).
It is difficult to stop thinking of this movie, even between viewing other movies... if I could i'd give it six stars.
I believe that the sex primarily reinforces the innocence, or naivete, of the twins' -- Isabelle and Theo's -- private universe where they, as spoiled child-adults, endulge any desire or whim. This is in contrast to the anger and intensity which dominates their pretense at social-activism, driven by simple-minded reaction (war -- bad) to the turbulent times (the 60's). But they are just two sides to the same coin -- they truly are "Dreamers", detached from reality by a wall of denial. When anything happens which forces them to deal with reality, such as having the true nature of their relationship discovered by their parents, the results are not pretty. (Actually, it is a little ambitious to suggest that their parents discovered the true nature of their relationship when it isn't clear that even they understand the true nature of this confusing mix of polyamory, bisexuality, incest, voyeurism, fraternity, obsession, and just a hint of sadomasochism.) Matthew, the young American student whom they "adopt," is torn between the seductive nature of their universe (including his attraction to and love of Isabelle and Theo) and his own grounding in reality -- though he is as young as they are, he possesses a maturity and true thoughtulness which they lack. So long as they all remain primarily isolated in their apartment, their private universe mostly prevails, but in the end their differences in the "real" world is what tears them apart.
The acting is superb throughout -- there is some very impressive work here. The cinematography is also excellent and the use of clips from classic films is brilliant, reinforcing not only the establishment of the characters' love of cinema but also the degree to which these "dreamers" are lost within their fantasies. The ending is amazing and rather abrupt. (mild spoiler alert) It will likely leave most viewers feeling a bit unfulfilled but that fits the movie. The ending likely would leave the characters feeling unfulfilled -- ultimately, no matter how much he wanted to be a part of Isabelle and Theo's universe, Matthew could never remain there. When reality came crashing through, the characters acted according to their nature and their differences severed the bond for good.
Some have complained that the film is too slow. It is a bit slow but when doing a character-study, how much "study" is too much? How much is enough? I, personally, was riveted throughout. Those who were not riveted, likely weren't really connecting with the movie anyway and more aggessive editing likely would not have changed that. The movie is not for everyone.
The only other Bernardo Bertolucci movie I have seen is "Last Tango in Paris" about which I was not very enthusiastic. It was an impressive film but ultimately I could not buy into the story -- I found the characters and situations ultimately unbelievable and that made all the good things in it difficult to appreciate. The same thing could have happened here -- these characters certainly are not like anyone I know or would even imagine but the acting, the script, and the directing drew me in -- I rather imagine that for many, that was not enough, and they wound up disliking the film as a result. I can't explain why it worked for me and I sure can't say whether it will work for you but the bottom line is, it worked for me. I enjoyed this movie.
In 1968 Paris, as the protests that began around cinema threaten to expand and bring down the
government, an odd manage-a-trios develops between a young American and a twin brother and
sister, whose relationship is full of borderline incest. The three form a tight circle and almost forget
the world outside while dunk on booze, sexuality,and each other. But by the end, the maelstrom outside
is too powerful to simply be ignored.
This is a very good film, but for me, not quite a great one. The depths of these characters aren't explored the
way Bertolucci does in, say `The Conformist', and there are even some places where it feels like he pulls his
punches (not a director one thinks of doing so.) But the homosexual attraction between the brother and the
American is reduced to an occasional ambiguous smoldering glance. That aspect, among others, was far
more explicit in the novel.
None-the-less, the film is beautifully made (some terrific editing that inserts images from other films that
relate to and comment on the story), and the acting is solid (and bold. While the sex itself isn't that much more
explicit than in many R rated films, the amount of relaxed nudity is, and that meant these young actors had to
really throw off their inhibitions to make many scenes work.
Avoid edited versions - this film is largely about sexuality, and watering down that element waters down the film.