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Betty Blue: Deluxe 2 Disc Edition [Blu-Ray]
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A landmark in French cinema, Jean-Jacques Beineix's erotically charged and visually intoxicating film also heralded the arrival of a new screen icon, Béatrice Dalle.
Laid-back handyman Zorg spends his time doing odd jobs on beach-front chalets, making chilli and harbouring dreams of becoming a writer. His life is turned upside down with the arrival or the beautiful but volatile Betty. They begin a romance fuelled by intense passion but as Betty turns increasingly violent and self-destructive, Zorg tries desperately to halt her slide into insanity.PRODUCT DETAILS
Region - Region Free
Subtitles - Optional English
Run Time - 'Director's Cut' - 185 mins / 'Original Theatrical Version' 121 minsSPECIAL FEATURES
The Director's Cut (Version Integrale
The Original Theatrical Version
1080p / 24fps
Optional English Subtitles
Audio: Original Mono presented in LPCM Dual Mono 2.
Disc 2 - Bonus DVD
'Blue Notes and Bungalows - The Making of Betty Blue'
A new documentary featuring new interviews with Jean-Jacques Beineix, Béatrice Dalle, Jean-Hughes Anglade, Claudie Ossard, Gabriel Yared, Jean-Francois Robin.
Beatrice Dalle Screen Tests
Sex and sunlight are on ample display in Betty Blue, director Jean-Jacques Beineix's passionate look at mad love. (Every French director is contractually required to make at least one movie about l'amour fou.)
It begins at the seashore, where handyman and failed novelist Zorg (Jean-Hugues Anglade) has his life electrified by Betty, a woman whose sense of abandon frequently tips over into the pathological. This was the role that introduced gap-toothed, voluptuous Beatrice Dalle to the world, and neither Dalle nor the world has ever quite recovered. Traces of Beineix's precious Diva are still present, though this is a darker and more memorable ride, especially in the three-hour "version integrale" that restores an hour of footage. Its copious nude scenes are a drawing card, but stick around for the age-old alchemy of life translated into art. Gabriel Yared's score is a favourite of movie-soundtrack mavens, especially its haunting piano theme.-- Robert Horton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
The shorter cinematic release is a fine film; nicely paced with moments of folly, fun, humour and sadness beautifully filmed. And a terrific score too. There a just a handful of cringe moments where the story, script or acting don't convince, but many more moments that are genuinely brilliant.
The Director's cut adds an unwelcome homophobic undercurrent to the film without adding anything of merit. To my mind, the editors got it spot on and did the film a massive favour when they cutout the flab for the shorter release.
Many reviewers will disagree, and I know the director certainly does (he was scathing about the cuts imposed to create the shorter cinematic version). Stll, that's the way I see it and the great news is that with this set you get both versions and can form your own opinion. Enjoy :)
The release is a 2 disc set (a 50gb dual layer blu-ray disc containing both versions of the film, and a DVD with extras).
The film itself never ages thanks to its brilliant score, sumptuous photography and warm lead performances. It's maybe not as graphic as i remembered it but there's still lots of nudity (male and female) and at the end of the day its a genuinely heartwarming human drama with dashes of humour along the way. Its testament to its enjoyment that there's not a boring moement even in the 3 hour director cut.
The film looks gorgeous in HD and in its original 1/66:1 ratio. The colours really jump off the screen and the closeup shots of Dalle and Anglades really show off incredible amounts of detail. The film has never looked clearer or brighter and the wonderful score has never been better served (PCM mono). The English subtitles are optional and easy to read at all times.
The theatrical cut looks lovely at a glance but I focussed on the directors cut which is also gorgeous.
On the DVD is a featurelength documentary with lots of new cast and crew interviews and some original screen test footage of Dalle.
Both discs are region free.
The packaging is nice too. The discs are housed in a DVD-sized digipack with an outer card slipcase (it's a bit taller than your avereage blu-ray package but roughly the same width).
There may be Spoilers if you read on.
The film charts Betty's deterioration from free-spirited extrovert, with a tendency to over-react to situations, to self-harming introvert Zorg can no longer reach. Actually, it isn't so much about Betty, as about the effect this has on Zorg. Neither is it a film about mental illness, as we, like Zorg, never find out what she is suffering from. The change in Betty is not linear, at times she is happy, stable and loving, everything seems to be going well; which makes the end almost unutterably sad. (I hope that isn't too much of a spoiler.) I think the final breakdown is triggered because she really wants a stable life and a family, then finds she can't have a baby: so this happy life is not to be for her. That isn't really explained very well in the film, perhaps it's only weakness, as you do find yourself yelling Why? Why? Why? at her sometimes. It is elaborated more in the Director's cut; I originally saw the shorter version, but now have the longer one.
Parallel to this story is that Betty encourages Zorg to write. She believes in him and tries everything she can to get his writing published. At the end he is published, but too late for her to know, and is writing another book (and talking to her as the cat, very poignant).
The subsidiary characters are less detailed than the two leads, but are quite well drawn, I particularly warmed to the fun-loving, generous, but emotional Eddy and thought Zorg's rather unpleasant boss deserved what he got.
This film looks amazing, but it is not "look" at the expense of content. Is quite rightly a classic.
Nothing more to add except to say that the English dubbing is poor, so watch and listen to it in French and read the subtitles.
This is a beautiful, haunting piece that has deservedly become a classic. The almost unbearable delay to its DVD release no doubt added to its mystique and cult status (along with that wonderful poster), but regardless, it is quite simply wonderful.
21 years since it's original release, it remains one of the very few examples of a film being as good as the novel - in fact, it's possibly even better.
Impeccably acted, with a wonderful script and haunting camera work, somehow it manages to exemplify the eighties while retaining a timeless quality. Beatrice Dalle is simply stunning - not just in her beauty but in the way she obssesses and seduces both the lead male character and the viewer.
It's almost a shame that she won this role so early in her career as she has never bettered it - and will probably never be able to. She therefore remains a very under-rated actress.
Essential viewing for any lover of French cinema - essential viewing in fact for any lover of quality cinema.
Buy it - you won't be disappointed, but you may be a little bit haunted ...
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