Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Terrence Malick's Next Film With Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara & Michael Fassbender Reportedly Gets Titled Terrence Malick's Next Film With Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara & Michael Fassbender Reportedly Gets Titled Watch: Jake Gyllenhaal Gets Bloody And Bruised In First Trailer For Boxing Drama 'Southpaw' Watch: Jake Gyllenhaal Gets Bloody And Bruised In First Trailer For Boxing Drama 'Southpaw' New Infographic Lays Out Canonical 'Star Wars' Timeline With Films, TV And Books New Infographic Lays Out Canonical 'Star Wars' Timeline With Films, TV And Books First Official Image: Jesse Eisenberg As Lex Luthor In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' First Official Image: Jesse Eisenberg As Lex Luthor In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Watch: First Trailer For Arnold Schwarzenegger's Zombie Pic 'Maggie' With Abigail Breslin Watch: First Trailer For Arnold Schwarzenegger's Zombie Pic 'Maggie' With Abigail Breslin Idris Elba Replaces Jamie Foxx In Harmony Korine's 'The Trap,' Al Pacino, Robert Pattinson, James Franco Also Join Idris Elba Replaces Jamie Foxx In Harmony Korine's 'The Trap,' Al Pacino, Robert Pattinson, James Franco Also Join 10 Terrible Films Starring Great Actors 10 Terrible Films Starring Great Actors Watch: Tom Hanks Acts Out His Filmography In 7-Minutes On 'The Late Late Show' Watch: Tom Hanks Acts Out His Filmography In 7-Minutes On 'The Late Late Show' Watch: Trailer For 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' Unrated Blu-Ray Edition, Will Also Feature An Alternate Ending Watch: Trailer For 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' Unrated Blu-Ray Edition, Will Also Feature An Alternate Ending New Directors/New Films Review: Jia Zhang-ke Produced 'K' Is A New Take On Franz Kafka's 'The Castle' New Directors/New Films Review: Jia Zhang-ke Produced 'K' Is A New Take On Franz Kafka's 'The Castle' Viggo Mortensen Reveals He Turned Down Quentin Tarantino's 'The Hateful Eight,' Auditioned For 'Reservoir Dogs' Viggo Mortensen Reveals He Turned Down Quentin Tarantino's 'The Hateful Eight,' Auditioned For 'Reservoir Dogs' Watch: First Teaser Trailer For 'Mission: Impossible: Rogue Nation' With Tom Cruise Arrives, If You Choose To Accept It Watch: First Teaser Trailer For 'Mission: Impossible: Rogue Nation' With Tom Cruise Arrives, If You Choose To Accept It Jonathan Nolan Says His Original Ending To 'Interstellar' Was “Much More Straightforward” Jonathan Nolan Says His Original Ending To 'Interstellar' Was “Much More Straightforward” The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

'Blue Is The Warmest Color' Author Julie Maroh Not Pleased With Graphic Sex In Film, Calls It "Porn"

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist May 28, 2013 at 2:26PM

It's just been a couple of days since Abdellatif Kechiche's "Blue Is The Warmest Color" (read our review here) walked away from Cannes with the Palme d'Or, with the prize being shared by the director and the film's stars, Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux. But the semi-controversy around the film hasn't died down. In France, where gay marriage was recently signed into law, 'Warmest' only continues the fierce debate around the issue, and weighing in with her own opinion is the woman whose work without which the movie wouldn't exist: Julie Maroh.
10
"Blue is the Warmest Color"
"Blue is the Warmest Color"

It's just been a couple of days since Abdellatif Kechiche's "Blue Is The Warmest Color" (read our review here) walked away from Cannes with the Palme d'Or, with the prize being shared by the director and the film's stars, Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux. But the semi-controversy around the film hasn't died down. In France, where gay marriage was recently signed into law, 'Warmest' only continues the fierce debate around the issue, and weighing in with her own opinion is the woman whose work without which the movie wouldn't exist: Julie Maroh.

Maroh is the author of the graphic novel that was adapted into Kechiche's screenplay, and taking to her blog yesterday, she has weighed in on the movie, and in particular the graphic sex scenes that have already caused a stir. Not only are the scenes explicit, but one particular sequence is long -- so long in fact we wrote "as it ran on and on we found ourselves escaping the film’s spell a bit and starting to contemplate the spectacle of the flesh in itself." But for Maroh, her concerns run deeper -- here's what she had to say: 

I consider that Kechiche and I have contradictory aesthetic approaches, perhaps complementary. The fashion in which he chose to shoot these scenes is coherent with the rest of what he his creation. Sure, to me it seems far away from my own method of creation and representation, but it would be very silly of me to reject something on the pretext that's it different from my own vision.

That's me as a writer. Now, as a lesbian...

It appears to me this was what was missing on the set: lesbians.

I don't know the sources of information for the director and the actresses (who are all straight, unless proven otherwise) and I was never consulted upstream. Maybe there was someone there to awkwardly imitate the possible positions with their hands, and/or to show them some porn of so-called "lesbians" (unfortunately it's hardly ever actually for a lesbian audience). Because -- except for a few passages -- this is all that it brings to my mind: a brutal and surgical display, exuberant and cold, of so-called lesbian sex, which turned into porn, and me feel very ill at ease. Especially when, in the middle of a movie theater, everyone was giggling. The heteronormative laughed because they don't understand it and find the scene ridiculous. The gay and queer people laughed because it's not convincing, and found it ridiculous. And among the only people we didn't hear giggling were the potential guys too busy feasting their eyes on an incarnation of their fantasies on screen.

I totally get Kechiche's will to film pleasure. The way he filmed these scenes is to me directly related to another scene, in which several characters talk about the myth of the feminine orgasm, as...mystic and far superior to the masculine one. But here we go, to sacralize once more womanhood in such ways. I find it dangerous.

As a feminist and lesbian spectator, I can not endorse the direction Kechiche took on these matters.

But I'm also looking forward to what other women will think about it. This is simply my personal stance.

And indeed, Maroh's lengthy thoughts on the film are balanced and she clarifies that she chose not to be involved in the movie adaptation, and supports Kechiche's desire to tell the story the way he feels fit. That said, she also notes that "tons of hours had been shot" and Kechiche "removed part of the middle." She acknowledges that for the most part the director got it right, but is a bit surprised he didn't mention her at all during the Cannes acceptance speech and Maroh is bit baffled why she wasn't featured more prominently with the cast on the red carpet.

Lots of food for thought for sure. Give her full statement a read, in English, right here. [Thanks for Varga Ferenc at Filmklub for the heads up!]

This article is related to: Blue is the Warmest Color


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


Check out Indiewire on LockerDome on LockerDome

E-Mail Updates