The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Les Parapluies de Cherbourg) Reviews
Just as it was the case with La La Land, I have a feeling this film will get better on repeated viewings. With every word sung, and in a different language, sometimes it's difficult to follow what is being said and what the emotional intentions are of each word. Watching romances in another language is always a fascinating experiment. On one hand, you could say that the language doesn't ultimately matter because what is meant is often shown through facial expressions. But at the same time, not being familiar with the native language can make it difficult to understand the exact tone of each spoken word. After all, how do we really know how well the actors can act if you aren't familiar to their language?
With all that said, there's no escaping the beauty to The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. Jacques Demy crafted this story in such a unique way, through imagery and framing devices. Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo resemble last year's Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone by being an honest and charismatic couple that you can root for. Just the pure emotion that both of them pour into their characters is admiring. Only, I wish we did get to see a little more of them doing things together, instead of just gush over each other through song after song.
Getting lost in the music, colorful imagery, and dreamy sequences are probably why this film became so popular, and further inspired La La Land. Although nothing really compares to the latter, 'Umbrellas' works on other levels because it's a contained, quiet, and sincere love story told through beautifully arranged musical numbers. This is one for the ages.
"La La Land's" Chazelle says this film was a significant influence on him & it's pretty easy to see, including the is-it-a-happy-ending, or not storyline. Yet, "Umbrellas" is purer sugar. There are similarities in production & costume design, too. Speaking of costumes: "Umbrellas" styles seem timeless.
Admittedly not for most Trumplicans, the others who stick with it will be rewarded. Timothy's Review just below seems right-on ...
What makes this film great isn't just the music, the performances, the sweeping, yet selectively intimate and invasive, cinematography, or really anything to do with technique at all, though there is masterful artistry on display at every turn. It's the lofty goal of throwing an audience into a world where life sings, and making them believe and be enchanted without a moment to catch their breath.
Thank you, Mr. Demy. This one is truly, truly special.