Betty Blue DVD
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Directed by Jean-Jacques Beineix
Produced in 1986
Main Language - French with English subtitles
Betty Blue is one of the great cult films of the 1980s – its iconic poster, explicit sex scenes and trendy director (Jean-Jacques Beineix, then fresh from the pioneering Diva) helped make it an unprecedented art-house success. The plot involves passionate young couple Zorg and Betty (Jean-Hugues Anglade and Béatrice Dalle) whose affair descends into literal amour fou as the girl suffers increasingly violent outbursts.
Dalle brings a new kind of sexual beauty to the screen, with her slightly gawky features and ferocious temperament a far cry from the standard notion of a chic, cool French lady. Her unpredictable rages are electrifying, particularly in the film’s most famous scene where she trashes Zorg’s chalet as he watches from afar before torching it and racing off in their car. Anglade is equally impressive in a less-showy part, desperate to keep his partner from despair, but ultimately realizing his efforts are futile.
This version intégrale adds an hour of footage to the original, which allows a deeper exploration of Betty’s mental decline – in the original cut, Dalle seemed to plunge from sanity to madness jarringly quickly. A restored sequence in which Betty kidnaps and plays with a stranger’s child is especially affecting. Nevertheless, although there are disturbing scenes in Betty Blue, it is the film's celebratory scenes of love that linger strongest in the memory.
Alex Davidson on 7th September 2005
Author of 231 reviews
Beineix's sexy, sassy and serio-comic odyssey of obsession gives Beatrice Dalle, all volatile passion and neurotic lust, one of the most memorable performances in recent French cinema. Jean-Hugues Anglade gets to put in some fine comic turns too before the tragedy starts to dominate.
Length: 185 mins
Cat No: DAVID2284
Format: DVD Colour