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Love Songs

3.7 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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(Nov 11, 2008)
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Editorial Reviews

Christophe Honoré further makes a case as one of the most exciting filmmakers of our generation with the exuberant and tender Love Songs (Les Chansons D'Amour), a modern day musical told through unforgettable songs sung entirely by the cast. In the hope of sparking their stalled relationship, Ismaël (Louis Garrel, Dans Paris, The Dreamers) and Julie (Ludivine Sagnier, Swimming Pool) enter a playful yet emotionally laced threesome with Alice (Clotilde Hesme, Regular Lovers). When tragedy strikes, these young Parisians are forced to deal with the fragility of life and love.

Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Ludivine Sagnier, Jean-Marie Winling, Brigitte Roan, Chiara Mastroianni, Louis Garrel
  • Directors: Christophe Honor
  • Format: Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Ifc
  • DVD Release Date: November 11, 2008
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001DJ7PUA
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,059 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Harold S. Levine on August 31, 2008
Format: DVD
Ismael (Louis Garrel, the Gallic version of the adorable young Hugh Grant), lives with Julie (Ludivine Sagnier). Alice (Clotilde Hesme), who works with Ismael, shares their bed and Julie's affections. On a night of tragedy, Jeanne, unawares, hooks up with Gwendal (Yannick Renier), whose teen-aged brother Erwann (Gregoire Leprince-Ringuet) turns out to be the only one who can bring a shattered Ismael back to life, in the most romantic man-on-man love scene since Rupert Grave's Alec Scudder climbed through Maurice's bedroom window 20 years ago. With rain-slicked streets, coffee and cigarettes, references to a dozen French classics, a haunting score and the best balcony scene since "Romeo and Juliet," this low-budget charmer, which has become a cult favorite in France with the under-25 set, is an "Umbrellas of Cherbourg" for the 21st Century.
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I caught this film one night on the IFC and although I usually dislike subtitled movies because I get distracted from the action by having to read....I watched it and WOW. The French really know how to make a musical in the non-conformist way. Songs are blended into scenes as casually as breathing and the plots and subplots of each characters stories just weave into each other in a playful way. All of the actors do their own songs in whatever voice they have which gives a "realness" to it and the twists in the story are interesting.
It's a case of boy meets girl meets girl till death us do part and then everyone realizes what boy really wants.
If you like cine-art type films and are not going to roll your eyes when the characters calmly start singing their lines and threesomes, homosexuality and bisexuality don't freak you out...then by all means buy this film to add to your collection. I did after viewing on cable and I love it!
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Format: DVD
Even if the French/English translation is not 100% acurate - even if the poetry has been lost in translation - this movie is a real Classico/modern sex tale of 2008.
A love triangle - sadness and love are the main theme of the movie
Great Paris shots - color and black and white - the streets - cafes - cigarettes .............. you are transported in Paris by nights most of the time.
It is the photography and musicality that makes this movie a piece of art - sometimes compared to the "parapluies de cherbourg" because of the songs styles - but for the rest we are in 2008 and deep in it.
This is VERY french, with a real style that is unique and will probably be a Classic in its genre.
If you want a trip to Paris with love stories - this is the one to get
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"Love Songs" is not what it might seem by glancing at the cover: a light-hearted musical about three young adults in love in Paris, enjoying a relationship that is more of a menage-a-trois than a love triangle. The movie takes a dark turn, and ends up exploring more types of love and more of the different emotions that love inspires than what is apparent at first glance.

"Love Songs" is a star turn for Louis Garrel, and he does an admirable job as Ismael. It helps that he is a beautiful man and a talented actor, as is especially demonstrated in two scenes where he plays parlor games (charades and puppeteering) for an amused audience that show off his expressive range. His character Ismael gets put through an emotional wringer as in a fairly short order of time he experiences a wide variety of different types of loving relationships, from the casual to the committed, with a variety of different people. Louis Garrel performs the role admirably, but one of the shortcomings of the movie is that it tries to do too much: any one of Ismael's relationships could have generated its own movie. Or maybe that is the point, at the end of the day: that is just the way that life is for young adults in the City of Light.

Ludivine Sagnier fans, of which I am most definitely one, will be a bit disappointed with "Love Songs", as the film definitely belongs to Garrel, not Sagnier. Sagnier's is a supporting role, and one which requires her to look wan and disinterested at a critical juncture, which does not play to her strength as a vibrant fun-loving woman. Clotilde Hesme is given a more carefree, impish role, and she does a fine job with it.
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By Charlus on September 6, 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It took me two viewings to warm up to this film: two love stories, one of which takes a tragic turn. The songs sounded mostly indistinguishable initially and like many French musicals, the actors were left to flounder in their movements while singing. But the depth of emotion rang increasingly true, the plot twists felt unforced and ultimately I was won over by its charm, its sweetness (without being cloying) and its sadness.
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One of my favorite movies, seen it probably 10 times, goes from funny and charming to really sad to heartwarming to uplifting with a twist. It's a musical of sorts but a modern take on one. Such a great film.
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It took me two viewings to warm up to this film: two love stories, one of which takes a tragic turn. The songs sounded mostly indistinguishable initially and like many French musicals, the actors were left to flounder in their movements while singing. But the depth of emotion rang increasingly true, the plot twists felt unforced and ultimately I was won over by its charm, its sweetness (without being cloying)and its sadness.
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