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2 Dec 1994
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Three Colors: Red

Three Colors: Red
Director : Krzysztof Kieślowski
Genre : Drama,romantic
Producer : Yvon Crenn
Writer : Krzysztof Kieślowski
Music Director : Zbigniew Preisner
Releasing On : 2 December 1994
Rating: 0 (0 Ratings)
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Three Colors: Red (French: Trois couleurs: Rouge) is a 1994 film co-written, produced, and directed by Polish filmmaker Krzysztof KieÅlowski. It is the final film of The Three Colors Trilogy, which examines the French Revolutionary ideals; it is preceded by Blue and White. KieÅlowski had announced that this would be his final film, which proved true with the director's sudden death in 1996. Red is about fraternity, which it examines by showing characters whose lives gradually become closely interconnected, with bonds forming between two characters who appear to have little in common.

Red was highly acclaimed, and was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Director for KieÅlowski.

Plot

The film begins with clips that track a telephone call between London and Geneva, where a university student and part-time model, Valentine Dussaut (Irène Jacob), is talking to her emotionally infantile and possessive boyfriend. During her work as a model she poses for a chewing-gum campaign and during the photo shoot the photographer asks her to look very sad. While walking back home Auguste, a neighbour of Valentine's, drops a set of books, notices that a particular chapter of the Criminal Code was open at random, and concentrates on that passage. While driving back to her apartment Valentine is distracted while adjusting the radio and accidentally runs over a dog. She tracks down the owner, a reclusive retired judge, Joseph Kern (Jean-Louis Trintignant). He seems unconcerned by the accident or the injuries sustained by Rita, his dog. Valentine takes Rita to a veterinarian, where she learns that Rita is pregnant. Valentine takes the dog home.

Themes

As in the previous two films, a single color dominates: numerous objects in the film are bright red, including the huge advertising banner featuring Valentine's facial profile. Several images recur throughout the film. Characters are often juxtaposed on different physical levels. The scenes between Valentine and Kern at his house never show the characters on the same level: Valentine either stands above him or sits below him. When Karin searches for Auguste, he hides on a walkway below her. During the climactic scene in the theater, Valentine stands on the stage, towering over Kern who is in the pit below. Telephone communication is important throughout, and so is broken glass (when Kern reveals his eavesdropping, his neighbors throw rocks through his windows, and the end of the film Kern watches Valentine and Auguste on the news while watching the outside world through broken glass). Also, when Valentine is bowling, the camera moves down the line to where there sits a broken glass next to a packet of Marlboro cigarettes, which is the brand that Auguste smokes.

Reception

Three Colors: Red received overwhelmingly positive reviews and currently holds a 100% "Certified Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 46 reviews. Film critic Geoff Andrew responded positively in Time Out: "While KieÅlowski dips into various interconnecting lives, the central drama is the electrifying encounter between Valentine - caring, troubled - and the judge, whose tendency to play God fails to match, initially, the girl's compassion. It's a film about destiny and chance, solitude and communication, cynicism and faith, doubt and desire; about lives affected by forces beyond rationalization. The assured direction avoids woolly mysticism by using material resources - actors, color, movement, composition, sound - to illuminate abstract concepts. Stunningly beautiful, powerfully scored and immaculately performed, the film is virtually flawless, and one of the very greatest cinematic achievements of the last few decades. A masterpiece."

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2 Dec 1994
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