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Overall Rating
4.21

Awesome45.61%
Worth A Look: 36.84%
Average: 12.28%
Pretty Bad: 3.51%
Total Crap: 1.75%

5 reviews, 27 user ratings



Dreamers, The
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by Greg Muskewitz

"... the fact that it is not so racy is the only true surprise ..."
3 stars

One of my early anticipations of the year proves to be a letdown far too soon.

A San Diego college student studies abroad in 1968 Paris, receiving his education predominantly from film (Freaks, A Star Is Born, Top Hat, Shock Corridor), before he is accepted by twin brother-and-sister cinephiles (“My first words were ‘New York Herald-Tribune’”) when the Cinémathèque Française is closed for political reasons. From there, the ménage-à-trois holes up in a penthouse apartment while the twins’ parents vacation, role-playing scenes from their favorite films (Band of Outsiders, Queen Christina) and sexually experimenting. (Incest being just as viable an option; they sleep together nude, and quiz each other on films, with the loser forfeiting to requests such as masturbating to a picture of Marlene Dietrich in Blonde Venus, or the brother telling the sister to make love to the American.) While it is in the mode of film-loving and appreciation, Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Dreamers is an intimate homage, perhaps serving greater purpose to the film buffs and historians, and despite its initial recoil from the political scene on the cinematic front, the trio’s esteemed homemade ventures tend to be of the vibrantly exquisite. (Bertolucci is sensually aware of lush, deep colors in geometrical compositions, and even more attentive and conscious of elongated shadows that take form on large solid shapes.) Being a Bertolucci film, there is no surprise in the camera’s seduction of the salacious female lead, here newcomer Eva Green, and the requisite inch-by-inch examination of her flesh, from her mountainous, missile-like breasts, to the clear and steady view of her labia majora. However, the oneiric atmosphere takes a turn for the worse as the focus inevitably turns to a bad daydream and the secluded apartment setting stultifies the aura of film worship in defiance of predictable bed-letting. The early controversy surrounding the film naturally dealt with its sexual content, and the distributor’s decision to trim it down in order to avoid an NC-17 rating. In the end, presented as intended, the fact that it is not so racy is the only true surprise as to what all of the hullabaloo was about, and that the assigned rating is hardly constituted. But that’s their problem, not mine. Beyond the stretch (or pause) of bedding, once that runs its course too, Bertolucci moves back to the political scene, opting instead this time to preclude the context of cinema’s place within it, and forge ahead in the strict mindset of Communism and Mao Tse-tung marches. In doing so, he abandons so much of what made it exciting in the first place and stagnates the function of the film’s own applicable beliefs. Cinematographer Fabio Cianchetti works brilliantly with Bertolucci, creating a breathtaking opening credits sequence that pans down and down and down until it lands on the wide-eyed Michael Pitt; even once Bertolucci has moved on to other things, Cianchetti never resigns from making it look great. With Louis Garrel, Anna Chancellor, and Robin Renucci.

[See it if you must.]

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=8505&reviewer=172
originally posted: 02/13/04 18:18:24
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

6/13/07 al smith good movie eva greens body is amazing what a pair of tits and bush 4 stars
3/01/07 fiona provocative.....artistic...a little bit sexy too. 4 stars
12/01/06 moonsilver beautiful,fasinating, saw it twice in same night 5 stars
11/16/06 David Pollastrini a porno movie masquerading as art! 4 stars
9/01/06 William Goss Pleasant and pretentious in equal measure. Green's certainly easy on the eyes, however. 3 stars
12/02/05 brian lee best movie & awesome 5 stars
8/17/05 shibu andrews outstanding,identifying myself,purify myself, 5 stars
8/03/05 Hockeytown Frustrating waiting for youth to take a stand for something 4 stars
6/07/05 Alex St. John The Dreamers is an amazing film that touches base with many topics still present today. 5 stars
4/19/05 Danny VERY strange. Leads are good, especially Pitt. 4 stars
3/21/05 Richard Pryor mmmmm, strange movie 4 stars
1/13/05 Amy Kennedy Wonderful movie for cinephiles 5 stars
11/08/04 g s induma vary vary good move 5 stars
8/29/04 jennifer it was the best movie i have ever seen so much emotion it was awesome 5 stars
8/16/04 Patricia Davis Loved it, nearly his most accessible film. The boys are DELISH. A brave film... 5 stars
7/29/04 tatum EEK! PENISES!! Lighten up, MPAA! 4 stars
7/13/04 Elizabeth Disappointing for Bertolucci. Nudity does not equal fleshed-out characters. 2 stars
4/26/04 Eugene du Plooy Excellent - so revolutionary! 5 stars
3/31/04 john loved it 5 stars
3/29/04 Megan Casey Amazing... but not everyone could handle it. 5 stars
2/29/04 nniedzielski how could a movie with that much sex in it be so boring? 2 stars
2/29/04 Brittani artistically and visually stunning 4 stars
2/29/04 jimmy two times strange film. I relate to it even though I was born in the seventies. classic bertolucci. 4 stars
2/28/04 Delphina a fine piece of beautiful cinema 5 stars
2/23/04 david miller Excellent...so unAmerican...beautifully filmed 5 stars
2/22/04 COLIN SELBY I HATED THIS MOVIE .COMPLETE TOSH 1 stars
2/22/04 Ash Eva green's body is a piece of art .I really loved the movie 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  06-Feb-2004 (NC-17)
  DVD: 13-Jul-2004

UK
  N/A

Australia
  29-Apr-2004


Directed by
  Bernardo Bertolucci

Written by
  Gilbert Adair

Cast
  Michael Pitt
  Eva Green
  Louis Garrel
  Robin Renucci
  Anna Chancellor



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