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A Slant on Relationship

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In a quiet coffee shop at night, Adele plans to reunite with Emma, a woman whom she once courted.
Adele : You still with the girl who was at our place?
Emma : Lise? Yeah
Adele : You happy?
Emma : Yeah
Adele : That’s good then. Is she nice?
Emma : Yeah, she’s nice.
Emma talks about her little happy family and how adorable their 3-year old daughter is. After a while, both of them are silent, finding something to carry on the uneasy conversation.
Adele : And sexually? Do you enjoy it?
Emma clears her throat.
Emma : It’s…
Adele : Lousy?
Emma : It’s not lousy, but it’s…
Adele : It’s boring
Emma : I don’t know, Adele. It’s not like with you
The silent slips in again.
Adele : I miss you. I miss touching each other, seeing each other, breathing in each other’s scent.
She grasps Emma’s hand.
Adele : I want you. All the time. No one else. I miss everything. But I have to say, I miss this a lot.
She kisses Emma’s hand.
Adele : Let me touch you.
Then she is licking Emma’s hand amorously.

This heartsick dialogue is one of the culminating scene from 2013 palme d’or winner, Blue Is The Warmest Colour. Abdellatif Kechiche’s latest film doesn’t solely tell about a coming-of-age romance of a girl named Adele with her lover, peppered along with intricate characters and conflict, moreover, it goes deeper by approaching the story of the aforesaid couple from a perspective that is depicted constantly in a vivid, venereal scene: physical intimacy. Though the venture isn’t quite new in a long history of world cinema, it was undertaken wholeheartedly and in a serious manner by the director and actors, which can be seen pleasurably throughout the 3-hour film.

As previously mentioned, the film follows the life of Adele (Adèle Exarchopoulos), a gauche teenager whose life is perfectly common thus far. She has her own circle of friends, who like gossiping guys and marching in protest on the street, and conservative parents with their family spaghetti recipe. Adele even glances at a guy and blushes when her friends tip her that the guy has a crush on her. She also says that she is into literature though she deemed Sartre’s existentialism or other philosophy things unimportant. Last but not least, her favorite American film—mentioned irreverently—is Stanley Kubrick and Martin Scorsese. Adele ticks all the boxes of becoming a typical teenager on puberty.

Above all of the attributes that are attached to Adele, she holds a deep ravishing passion unconsciously and how the director playing with it is intriguing.

One would question why Abdellatif Kechiche decided to film excessive sex scenes, which involves exposing genital and several sex positions, in his movie. Adele and Emma (Léa Seydoux) first encounter is when both of them are passing by at the street and they just glance at each other. The next scene in which both of them are in one frame is a hot, steamy fondle in Adele’s dream. The coitus between Adele and her boyfriend is afterward becoming relevant whether she is trying to suppress her unusual arousing desire or she wants to find out the truth. Though the sexual intercourse had been done, she remains perplexed by her own sexual orientation. Eventually, she is being certain of her sexual orientation by kissing her girl friend on one occasion. What drives Adele later to bump into Emma in the bar is her hidden lust, which is toward a female.

Another reason for the sex scene has to take place because sex is the only thing that ties Adele and Emma together. After their first, torrid tribadism scene, they are barely having a conversation just for the both of them during dating. They share activities but none of them have dialogue. There are 3 scenes in which both of them are talking privately: the sex scene after Emma meet Adele’s parents, the scene when both of them are cuddling in naked—Adele wants to have sex with Emma, but Emma rejects it because she’s having her period—and the scene when they had an argument and break up. With less conversation and the nonexistent of other sex scene (the one with Adele and her colleague), the film is emphasizing Adele’s sexual experiences as the profound base of the story.

After all, Adele’s passion is the core of the film that propels the plot forward. It triggers her relationship with Emma and the one who also ends it. Kechiche knew and treated it specifically. Right through the film, we see Adele in tears and joy. She is seen so lively and cheerful in these 4 different scenes: the protest scene, the gay parade scene, the birthday scene, and a dancing scene. All of them almost contain no dialogue and 3 of them appear unexpectedly. Scenes where we watch a passionate and enthusiastic Adele, Including her sex scenes, are shown in abrupt transition as if they want to tell that Adele’s passion is uncompromising.

Abdellatif Kechiche has created sex scenes more humane at portraying it as a physical intimacy that is not focusing on the pleasure and eroticism, but more on the desire of loving between the two lovers. One could say lust is the most primitive human nature, nevertheless, it is the sincerest thing that human will always possess.

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