Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Love Me If You Dare|
Actors: Guillaume Canet, Marion Cotillard, Thibault Verhaeghe, Joséphine Lebas-Joly, Emmanuelle Grönvold
Director: Yann Samuell
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
LOVE ME IF YOU DARE depicts the romantic story of Julian and Sophie, who meet in grade school and create an intense game of "Dare" to distract them from the harsh realities of their lives. Over time their game becomes a m... more »
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Don't Compare to Amelie and Enjoy It For What It Is
Divine Miss M | Los Angeles, CA | 02/22/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After the success of "Amelie," the Hollywood marketing machine is in desperate search of the next big foreign romantic comedy and likewise misleads the public by packaging every movie to come out of France as the sequel to "Amelie." "Love Me if You Dare" is very much a romantic BLACK comedy, a fact that will likely turn off viewers who come in strictly with an "Amelie" mindset. Don't, and I think you'll really appreciate what THIS movie has to offer, which is a charm all its own. For those of you unsure of what to expect from a romantic black comedy, think "Secretary" but without the S&M.
I was really pleasantly surprised by this movie because I loved "Amelie" and hated "Secretary," yet I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. The story of two people so obviously in love with each other yet so wrong for each other turns the romantic comedy archetype on its head. And it's not just the typical "he/she is from the wrong side of the tracks" storyline although that plays a part. There are SO many reasons why Sophie and Julien should not be together, so much so that in any other movie you would end up hating one or both characters, but you can't help but like and want them to be together. It's so cheesy to say "Oh, they're soulmates" but they are and it's not a neat, pretty package. I love how this movie explores that idea because it shows everything that goes along with love - jealously, anger, bitterness, passion, and even hatred. It's messy and it can be dark, but it's also the most exhilarating, undiminished thing in your life.
Don't be turned off by my review - it's not all dark. There are enough moments of whimsy to satisfy the most avid "Amelie"-lover out there. Some moments will make you laugh out loud. And some moments will make you blanch. But it's love in all its guts and glory. "Love Me if You Dare" adds some much needed edginess and originality to the current stream of banal and redundant romantic comedies. "Amelie" was wonderful but give this movie the chance it deserves."
Love Means Saying "Game"
Only-A-Child | 08/28/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The first feature from French director Yann Samuell is an "expressionistic" allegory about love, disguised as a romantic fantasy. It is about how in our relationships we never outgrow childhood games or fully recover from insecurities caused by deep childhood wounds. It is about how people in love constantly test each other. Each dare is a renewed demand for the other person to prove their love, no matter what the sacrifice.
"Love Me If You Dare" is a gimmick translation of "Jeux d'enfants", a better translation would be "Games of Children". But given the general confusion about this film by English speaking viewers and critics the inaccurate title is probably appropriate. Film Theory 101 would include a discussion of the two basic film extremes, realism and expressionism. Generally the closer a film comes to reproducing reality, the less room there is for the filmmaker to express his artistry. Which is not to say that realism is necessarily less manipulative than expressionism, both aim to affect their viewing audience, expressionism is just less constrained.
When you are used to a steady diet of Hollywood realism, it is difficult to switch gears and watch a film like "Jeux d'enfants" without attempting to force it into the realism mold. The temptation is to gloss over the surreal elements and to take everything you see literally. But Samuell has a background as an illustrator and designer. Note the inventive visuals that employ a multitude of cardboard cutouts and idyllic fantasy settings. This is expressionism. Note the accelerated action segments and strange transitions. This is expressionism. Note the interesting time passage montages and flashbacks.
While you sometimes see similar stuff incorporated into a realistic film, it is explained away as a dream, hallucination, or memory. Here it is a tip-off that this is a surreal allegory like Bunuel's "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie". If you avoid taking "Jeux d'enfants" too literally, stop being judgmental about the actions and motivations of its characters, and focus instead on picking up its allegorical elements you will probably understand it better and enjoy it more.
Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child."
The BEST love story I've seen in a long time.
J.G. | Vancouver, WA | 09/09/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have only seen this movie in French while I was in France and I loved it! There are so many twists and turns in the movie that it keeps you wondering what will happen next. It also has an amazing love story involving the two main characters, who you will fall in love with. They have wonderful on-screen chemistry. The ending is one that you will argue what you think it meant with others. I love this movie and am pre-ordering it."
Pretty dark and twisted... I loved it!
Andrea D'Amico | Gainesville, FL | 06/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie has a little bit of everything: romance, comedy, tragedy, and action, all rolled up into a French fantasy-like film. It was like a combination of "Moulin Rouge" and "Amelie," but much darker. Some of the dares Julien and Sophie perform are a little sick, but thrilling all the same. The acting is brilliant; the two children are so enchanting as Julien and Sophie, and the two adult actors are so captivating you can really feel how much Sophie and Julien love each other. Their love emanates so strongly that the line between reality and fanstasy is blurred to the point of non-existence, and no matter how you interpret the ending, the message is clear: some loves are meant to be immortal."