Betty Blue

"Very Good"

Betty Blue Review


Betty... Betty's got issues. Loads of them. So many issues that they made a movie about her that runs over three hours long.

As Betty, Béatrice Dalle makes her screen debut, taking on the role of a young and brazen twentysomething that's clearly -- painfully -- stricken with some mental illness and probably more than one. As we meet her, she's visiting her new boyfriend Zorg (excellent name), played by Jean-Hugues Anglade, and much of their three hours on camera is filled with various forms of foreplay, sex, and afterplay, with Betty spending the intervening hours in various stages of undress.

It isn't until Betty has exhibited a number of cases of strange behavior that we start to get a glimpse at just how nuts she really is. When she burns down Betty and Zorg's beach shack it seems almost quaint, but soon enough she's trashing rooms, stealing cars, and stabbing a restaurant patron with a fork. Zorg isn't terribly fazed (the sex must be fantastic); he seems like the only person in the world who really understands the poor girl. But ultimately it's hard to see how he'll cope with her mania, as Betty's actions get more and more unforgivable.

Developing slowly, we ultimately realize that the film isn't really about Betty but rather about Zorg. It is at it's most interesting, actually, when Betty isn't on camera. Not only do we get a glimpse of the things Zorg must do to keep Betty fed and (barely) clothed, we see his depth of emotion and start to feel his terror about what Betty might actually do when he's not around.

The film has long existed in a two hour version, which is what most people think of as Betty Blue and which (I'm told) focuses far less on Zorg. (The French title is 37°2 le matin, or literally 37.2 Degrees in the Morning (that's about body temperature).) This director's cut, finally available on DVD, may not answer many questions about what mental illness is, but it does cast an enchanting spell over its audience which allows it to tolerate 185 minutes of often repetitious filmmaking. Jean-Jacques Beineix's villagescapes and countryside vistas are hard to resist, and the dichotomy of a stone cold looney prancing around them only makes the tableau more curiously complete.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 120 mins

In Theaters: Friday 7th November 1986

Box Office Worldwide: $2M

Distributed by: Alive Films

Production compaines: Gaumont, Cargo Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 77%
Fresh: 20 Rotten: 6

IMDB: 7.4 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Zorg, as Betty, as Eddy, as Lisa, as Richard le jeune policier, Dominique Besnehard as Le client de la pizzeria, Clémentine Célarié as Annie

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Murder on the Orient Express Movie Review

Murder on the Orient Express Movie Review

The latest adaptation of Agatha Christie's 83-year-old classic whodunit, this lavish, star-studded film is old-style...

Paddington 2 Movie Review

Paddington 2 Movie Review

The first Paddington movie in 2014 is already such a beloved classic that it's hard...

A Bad Moms Christmas Movie Review

A Bad Moms Christmas Movie Review

Everyone's back from last year's undemanding adult comedy, plus some starry new cast members, for...

Brawl in Cell Block 99 Movie Review

Brawl in Cell Block 99 Movie Review

Filmmaker S. Craig Zahler brought a blast of offbeat creativity to the Western genre two...

The Death of Stalin Movie Review

The Death of Stalin Movie Review

Fans of the film In the Loop and the TV series Veep will definitely not...

Call Me By Your Name Movie Review

Call Me By Your Name Movie Review

Set in northern Italy in the summer of 1983, this internationally flavoured drama is a...

Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review

Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review

The most riotously enjoyable Marvel movie yet, this action epic benefits hugely from the decision...

Advertisement
Breathe Movie Review

Breathe Movie Review

While this biopic has the standard sumptuous production values of a British period drama, it's...

The Snowman Movie Review

The Snowman Movie Review

With a cast and crew packed with A-list talent, this film seems like it should...

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.