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Several comments: I realize that the movie is titled "Elles" as a wordplay on both the magazine and the two young women we get to know ("Elles" is the French female plural for "they"), but this is doing a disservice to the movie. Why? Because as it turns out the movie pays more attention to, and is far more effective as an analysis of, Anne's crumbling marriage than it does to the economic and emotional circumstances of the two young women. The last third of the movie barely touches on the fate of the young women, and hence my suggested retitling of the movie. That said, the acting performances of the three leading ladies are all noteworthy.
The movie is a co-production between a number of various French and Polish resources. In fact I don't recall having seen so many different "supporting" and "participating" groups in a single movie (maybe as many as 15!).Read more ›
The centerpiece of Elles by far is Juliette Binoche's character, and she gives a star performance. Her character is not terribly attractive, and her face often shows the stresses of the life she leads as a busy working mom, but that is as it should be. She is most appealing when she lets her hair down by getting tipsy with one of her interview subjects, and that scene is a pure joy. The two college students, played by Anais Demoustier and Joanna Kulig, are near opposites in personality, body type and hair color, but each actress gives an intimately revealing portrayal. The men and boys in Elles have much more minor roles, but are well played. The casting and acting are spot-on, and speak to the care with which Elles was obviously made.Read more ›
Anne (Juliette Binoche) is apparently a happily-married journalist, who is writing an article about Paris' students for Elle magazine. She struggles doing chores at home, including raising a teenage son and a smaller daughter, and doing research for her book. This research involves spending time and interviewing two young college students (Joanna Kulig and Anaïs Demoustier), who, for different reasons, moonlight as prostitutes. The descriptions of their sexual duties are very graphic, and it involves several types of men - mostly married --, who have the most bizarre requests. This assignment slowly affects Anne's psyche and personal life, forcing her to make some serious decisions.
Directed by Malgoska Szumowska, "Elles" is another movie that shows us aspects of our daily life that people are not aware of or simply ignore. Student prostitution is a sign of the times, not only in France, but in other places, including the USA. The film, as I say, is kind of graphic in the frank depiction of sex and sexual preferences, including a good dose of nudity. The Blu-ray includes edited and unedited trailers and more. (France, Poland, Germany; 2011, color, 99 min plus additional material)
Reviewed on March 12, 2013 by Eric Gonzalez for Kino Lorber Blu-ray
Most Recent Customer Reviews
What a disappointment! It is well acted and eminently watchable, except, as is sometimes the case with French film, its lack of an ending instead of being up to the viewer to make... Read morePublished 8 months ago by MB
Almost interesting but the internal conflict with the main protagonist (played by Juliette Binoche) is poorly developed.Published 9 months ago by Akif Uzman
Quite compelling story with another breattaking interpretation by Juliette Binochet!Published 13 months ago by Armando Duarte
Brilliant! One magnificent scene after anther. Not for those who fear their own sexuality and sexual sensations. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Daniel G. Madigan
Well done and I enjoyed the unpretentiousness of the characters and film. I always like the French Movies as they "say it like it is."Published 14 months ago by Catherine Greene
This is simply an awful film every way you look at it. I would rather have teeth pulled than have to sit through another viewing. Read morePublished 15 months ago by strelnikov