The Duke Of Burgundy (2015)
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Critic Reviews for The Duke Of Burgundy
[Peter Strickland's] new movie has more going on than cinematic mind games.
There's voyeurism, fetishism, bondage, lingerie and high-flown naughtiness galore, but that's hardly the movie's most conspicuous achievement.
The Duke of Burgundy is no mere style exercise or slavish homage. Strickland finds both humour and pathos in the situation of Cynthia and Evelyn, who are every bit as trapped as the insects they collect and catalogue.
It's a visceral experience that begs multiple viewings not to necessarily understand meaning, but to wrap your head around the abstraction.
It would be interesting to see how a daring female filmmaker would follow the story's fetishized elements toward their logical trajectories.
Audience Reviews for The Duke Of Burgundy
This stimulating, stylish and sensual story of domination and co-dependency is not only technically irreproachable (the gorgeous visuals, wonderful score and outstanding sound design) but is also intelligent and rings truer than most films out there about love and relationships.
Described in advance as a lesbian S&M spectacle, this will suitably disappoint those who are interested in it for that reason. It is a portrait of a boring, middle class, repressed, repetitive relationship, like the many thousands we like to think of as such in the miles and miles of suburbia around the world. The only difference is that it is dressed up slightly by making the characters lesbian and giving the repetition a vaguely sexual nature. But it could just as easily have been about the washing up or putting out the garbage bins. Undoubtedly that was part of the point of the film, to be ironical, while being artfully put together. But the art is prosaic and the film is just a shallow, middle class indulgence. Its most unattractive feature is its crude exploitation of hundreds of dead animals, in the form of butterflies and other insects formaldehyded and pinned to the wall. One star for the nobility of those creatures, compared with the lack of it in the makers.
Early on while watching The Duke of Burgundy I knew what I was about to watch was something special. What I did not expect was something so wholly original, refreshing, and beautiful. From the first shot to the final one The Duke of Burgundy maintains perfection. The acting was award worthy, the cinematography was beautiful, the score was one of the best I heard in 2015, and the story was so... so smooth.
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