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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not my favorite Bertolucci film, but well worth seeing
Once again, Bertolucci explores his favorite themes of politics, the nature of individuality vs. belonging and transgressive
sex.

In 1968 Paris, as the protests that began around cinema threaten to expand and bring down the government, an odd
ménage-a-trios develops between a young American and a twin brother and sister, whose relationship is...
Published on 20 July 2012 by K. Gordon

versus
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit long winded and dull
The only reason I bought this was because the beautiful Eva Green gets her kit off. Eventually. but the film could grow on you when you get to understand it. Worth it for Eva & fast forward a lot.
Published on 3 Feb. 2013 by peter drew


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not my favorite Bertolucci film, but well worth seeing, 20 July 2012
By 
K. Gordon - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Once again, Bertolucci explores his favorite themes of politics, the nature of individuality vs. belonging and transgressive
sex.

In 1968 Paris, as the protests that began around cinema threaten to expand and bring down the government, an odd
ménage-a-trios develops between a young American and a twin brother and sister, whose relationship is full of
borderline incest. The three form a tight circle and almost forget the world outside while dunk on booze, sexuality,
and each other. But by the end, the maelstrom outside is too powerful to simply be ignored.

This is a very good film, but for me, not quite a great one. The depths of these characters aren't explored the way
Bertolucci does in, say `The Conformist', and there are even some places where it feels like he pulls his punches
(not a director one thinks of doing so.) But the homosexual attraction between the brother and the American is
reduced to an occasional ambiguous smoldering glance. That aspect, among others, was far more explicit in the novel.

None-the-less, the film is beautifully made (some terrific editing that inserts images from other films that relate to and
comment on the story), and the acting is solid (and bold. While the sex itself isn't that much more explicit than in many
films, the amount of relaxed nudity is, and that meant these young actors had to really throw off their inhibitions to make
many scenes work.

Avoid edited versions - this film is largely about sexuality, and watering down that element waters down the film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars film appreciation in the buff, 11 Dec. 2014
By 
schumann_bg - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
There is a lot to enjoy in this playful film, which is not entirely playful ... The implications of a scene just before the end are left floating, as is the ending itself. It is ambiguous to say the least, yanking the film back into the political arena and suggesting that private confusion may find an outlet in political engagement. This far-reaching theme is added almost as an afterthought to what is a 'huis clos' situation between a somewhat incestuous brother and sister and an American student they meet, coinciding with the absence of the parents. This is the cue for a lot of stripping off, which provides some visual thrills in the form of Louis Garrel, Eva Green and Michael Pitt, that are quite pornographic in places. All credit to them for putting themselves in the hands of the director Bernardo Bertolucci, as it is required by the tone of the film and perhaps constitutes its originality. There is a feeling of them being rich and spoilt, which is in the script; holding our sympathy, or at least our interest, is largely down to them. The playfulness arises not only from their antics, which can be tedious, but from the continuous stream of film references, as they are all film buffs and constantly refer to films with forfeits if the allusion is not identified. Bertolucci intercuts scenes in the cluttered Paris apartment with moments from a number of classic films, including Bande a part, A Bout de Souffle, Blonde Venus, and Queen Christina - but there are many others, as well as bits from soundtracks by Bernard Herrmann and Jean Constantin (The 400 Blows), even without the visuals. It makes for a rich texture and a kind of homage to filmmaking itself.

The downside is that the apartment does make you feel confined, even though this is no doubt the intention - it is an unhealthy 'looking inwards'. The whole film could be read, possibly, as a critique of parents who don't have their finger on the pulse, and where this can lead. There is humour in quite a few scenes, notably one of a burnt meal, and Louis Garrel subsequently going down to the bins wearing just a short green tunic, a bit like Robin Hood, so that as he bends over the bins scavenging for an alternative supper his bottom is revealed, repeatedly. Garrel in particular has a comic gift. The script is in itself based on Cocteau's Les Enfants terribles, presumably, and shows Gilbert Adair's flair for pastiche. However I find it a bit lacking in substance as a style, and prefer, say, Love And Death On Long Island, another pastiche based on a Gilbert Adair book (the original source being Death In Venice), where the lightness works more in its own terms. Here the comment on the events of May '68 seems less coherent, and even sidelined. But it is nonetheless a film whose texture offers plenty of passing pleasures, and you do sense the hand of a master filmmaker.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Les enfants terribles?, 3 Jun. 2012
By 
GlynLuke (York UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
The comparisons with Cocteau`s famous book/film are obvious, but this is in fact Bertolucci`s ironic, erotic take on the 1968 Paris riots, incorporating the protests on behalf of the legendary French film historian Henri Langlois, who was being removed from his post at the Cinematheque (by the then Minister of Culture Andre Malraux, no less) which he co-founded in 1935. All this soon becomes somewhat peripheral as the `action` moves into the well-appointed Bohemian apartment of Isabelle and Theo`s parents, who then proceed (most thoughtfully) to go away for a month, leaving their teenage children to their own devices.
By now they have taken under their wing a callow American student, Matthew, and the fun begins.
Most of the fun is - on the surface at least - of a sexual nature, with all three capering around the rooms of the labyrinthine apartment in various states of undress, and very often naked. Apparently, the actors were encouraged to spend a while in the flat rented for the shoot getting to know each other and feeling at ease with each other`s nudity. Well, it certainly seems to have worked. None of the actors seem to be `doing a nude scene`, and their nakedness - often highly explicit for what is basically a mainstream art film - soon becomes as natural as nudity ever gets in movies.
The film is mostly in English, with a particularly compelling, oddly touching, and knowingly witty performance by the then unknown Eva Green (who was soon to be seen, in a far more sophisticated guise, as one of the best ever `Bond girls` alongside Daniel Craig in Casino Royale). It is a brave, bold portrayal of a semi-sexualised girl-woman, who happens to have an incestuous bond with her brother. Matthew`s attempts to `educate` her in the conventional ways of boyfriend/girlfriend etiquette are indulged for a brief while (their date, a visit to a restaurant and then the cinema, is a touching interlude) until matters turn darker, in more ways than one. Then, the parents return...then the outside world comes literally flying through the window.
Louis Garrel is suitably moody as brother Theo, while Michael Pitt plays the blond, loved-up yank with a nicely ageless aplomb. But - for several reasons - it is Eva Green one can`t take one`s eyes off. She was and is an actress of versatility, intelligence, as well as a ripe voluptuousness all her own. And those eyes!
Bertolucci has made few flawless films, and there is certainly a simplistic element to this semi-political film, while the inclusion of clips from classic movies, as well as rock songs of the era from, predictably, the likes of Hendrix, Janis and The Doors, works much of the time but frequently flirts with a corner-cutting triteness.
There`s an amusing exchange early on between Theo and Matthew regarding the relative merits of Chaplin/Keaton and Clapton/Hendrix. Guess who sticks up for Buster and Jimi! Then Theo (and perhaps this is an in-joke too far) mentions Jerry Lewis...
All in all, an enjoyable, bracing, charged film, in which sexuality plays a major role, yet in a way which few surely would find off-putting or prurient.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'The Dreamers' is one of the sexiest movies of all time., 29 July 2013
By 
Brett_Bloom (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
This is an unusual film about an unusual subject matter. Based on Gilbert Adair's novel, 'The Holy Innocents', this film is a sensuous postcard from the Paris of 1960s. The world of a pair of sexy siblings gets an American visitor and their lives change. Michael Pitt, the actor who went on to stardom in 'Boardwalk Empire' plays the curious young man. Eva Green is one half of a taboo-breaking pair of twins.

The movie is a feast for cinephiles. The characters' dialogue centre around classic movies. If you fancy an erotic treat, 'The Dreamers' is it. And you can love it without feeling guilty! Why? Every scene is shot with Bernado Bertolucci's painterly care.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eva Green - goddess!, 18 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
What a great film. Extremely well casted and all the actors seem so believable and real. An interesting storyline exploring the bizzare sibling relationship between two of the main characters and their reactions to the realisation that their relationship cannot continue in the same vein if they are to leave adolescence and the security of family life behind, develop as individuals and emerge into the adult world as seperate entities.
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53 of 63 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Defying expectations and actually does the impossible, 23 April 2006
This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Without generalising, most of todays films that either try to explore sexuality and youth and liberty tend to side with the explicit, and thus the film is weak.

The Dreamers departs from this tradition. Finally we are given a truely riveting plot, that is utterly consuming, so much so, it is mouth-watering. Here, Bernardo Bertolluci hones his craft perfectly that he does the unimaginable-he gives us characters whom we actually care about. Theo (played by Louis Garell, who after the volitile Ma Mere, proves his acting ability) and his twin sister, Isa, do not have a normal relationship. They liberate themselves and taboo break, they are not phased by seeing one another naked or partaking in sexual acts. But it is a pure bond of love and nothing incestuous, although it does misleadingly form this impression at the beginning.

In steps Matthew, an American student taking in the sights and sounds of Paris, amidst the politcal back drop, that is so vivid, the film has a potent air of true period capture and revolution.

In cinema, if there is one thing i can not abide by, it is jumped up films that are pretentious drivel, pretending to be a mix of drama and erotisism. But that is where again The Dreamers again departs from tradtion. The naked flesh and sexuality explores the relationship between the three characters, in a simply breathtaking manner. Usually the audience will be on alert when the sauce appears on screen, but this film has such a natural ease that what potentially could of caused a mainstream furoure, is instead sheer provocative brilliance.

The young actors are fantastic, haunting and memorable-and what a surprise it was to see Anna Chancellor in this film, as Theo's and Isa's mother.

Believe me, this film is not pretentious pornography; it is a visually stunning and unashamedly flipant film. Touching and humerous, with a bittersweet twist, this is sadly a coming of age tale that will not be as highly regarded by a younger audience, who appreciate the taste of the American Pie triology, but whose pallets are not sophisticated enough to stomach the gripping The Dreamers. An art-house classic of recent times.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good, 12 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
I read the book 'The holy innocents' first and was eager to watch the film, the film is a little different in its portrayal of the characters, their relationship and a few of the events. However this didn't make me like it any less because the changes although changed the story made an equally likeable one. The story is of an American exchange student Matthew studying in Paris who makes friends with Twins Theo and Danielle, he is instantly enamoured with them and circumstances enable him to move in with them while their parents are away. This begins a passionate but oddly innocent relationship between the three, along with their in cooperated cinaphille* games. During this they remain oblivious to the revolution going on outside and Matthew reveals the many flaws in Theo and Danielle's almost incestuous relationship. It is a very interesting and unusual story and once described as a love letter to Paris which really comes across. I would recommend it but there are a few scenes you may find a little 'raunchy' or uncomfortable but nevertheless very good, Bertolucci on good form and splendid performances by all.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A curiously wonderful movie, 15 April 2012
By 
Andy_atGC (London UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Although made rather more recently, the film harks back to 1968 Paris. Then post-de Gaulle, pre-EEC expansion and pre-Euro and facing political and student unrest, France was then very uncertain where it stood on the world political stage. It was not yet 'in amongst the big boys' which is where it sees itself today.

The male subject of the movie Matthew, an American, is in Paris on a one-year course to study the language. During the early days, he by chance encounters a student protest where he encounters an attractive young woman who has seemingly chained herself to some railings. When the protest develops such that the police retaliate against the protesters, he gets caught up in the process. The girl's brother arrives and they return to the siblings' home where their parents are about to depart on holiday. The siblings invite their guest to stay overnight when he later by chance encounters the pair sleeping side-by-side, nude or semi-nude, after their Anglo-French parents have departed (the mother is played by Anna Chancellor, 'Duckface' in Four Weddings and a Funeral).

The siblings have a major interest in classic cinema, especially American movies, and one of their games is to test the other's knowledge. Matthew shares their interest in film and he becomes part of that game which can involve a forfeit, sometimes sexual, should an answer not be known or incorrect. Needless to say, a three-way sexually-motivated relationship later develops as the sister (played by Eva Green) induces and seduces the young man into their games, all of which had been completely private between the pair and very much unknown to their parents. Theo and Isabelle have a history of mutual curiosity and there is the inference of sibling incest, which is later seen to be false as it is Matthew who is Isabelle's first true lover. It appears that Isabelle had never been on a date and possibly the sibling's mutual curiosities are driven by a lack of external relationships with the opposite sex.

There is a scene, roughly mid-way in the movie, where Isabelle, apparently in deliberation, grossly overcooks and burns a meal. Finding it quite inedible, and devoid of funds having cashed all the cheques their parents had left for their upkeep in the weeks ahead, Theo later rummages through what is presumably a restaurant's rubbish pile of discarded food waste to bring home a mixture of partly edible and inedible garbage. Both activities seem to be another side to their gameplay.

The movie attempts to show the changes in personality and attitudes that develop as the relationship expands.

The largely French cast, the major players at least are all very fluent English speaker, although there are moments where they will speak French amongst themselves. Those parts are all sub-titled.

At times all very innocent and mundane and explosive at others, the movie is rather more explicit and thought-provoking than is usual, even for a French movie. I had the impression that it was a challenge for its young stars as is it sexually-charged almost from beginning to end.

Although I am of greater age than those portrayed here, I believe from comments made by younger relatives and by those of friends, that many of today's university students may well see elements of their own lives here. It may perhaps cause concern in some parents to know what their little darlings may be doing behind their backs.

Not quite a French movie, or an American one, but somewhere in between. It should perhaps fail but it does not!
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32 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dreamy Dreamers, 13 Aug. 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dreamers (Special Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Set in Paris, 1968, this film conveys the most delicate and beautiful atmosphere, despite the turmoil of the period. In the absence of a plot, it is this atmosphere, and what is created by the three characters that is so appealing. A house to themselves and little money, these characters discover much more to indulge in than their shared passion for film. Shocking, curious and elegant... highly reccomended.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit long winded and dull, 3 Feb. 2013
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The only reason I bought this was because the beautiful Eva Green gets her kit off. Eventually. but the film could grow on you when you get to understand it. Worth it for Eva & fast forward a lot.
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