Portrait of a Lady on Fire

audience Reviews

92% Audience Score92%
  • 4 of 5 stars
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    Beautiful and believable tension built up between the leads. Total eye candy cinematography, like watching a renaissance painting, but make it gay.
  • 3.5 of 5 stars
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    While terms like "masterpiece" have been freely bandied about concerning this French period piece drama about forbidden romance, this beautifully filmed, exquisitely staged and well-acted offering nevertheless gets weighed down by sluggish pacing, an anticlimactic and often-predictable script, extraneous story threads, and an occasional lacking in gut-level believeability. Director Celine Sciamma's latest may be a joy to look at, and its content may indeed constitute an earnest, heartfelt feminine manifesto, but it often comes across as somewhat tentative and restrained in going all-out for what it really wants to say (especially with a title that includes the words "on fire" in it). To be sure, this is a fine piece of filmmaking in many regards, but rising to the level of "masterpiece" sincerely requires more than what's served up here.
  • 5 of 5 stars
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    Beautiful. An aching masterpiece
  • 4.5 of 5 stars
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    🏳️‍🌈 Portrait de la jeune fille en feu. Une peintre doit réaliser le portrait de mariage d'Héloïse en secret, parce-qu'elle résiste à poser. Alors introduite auprès d'elle comme une dame de compagnie, elle la regarde. A beautiful relationship that develops slowly throughout this exquisite period drama and makes the viewer enthralled by the amazing scenarios and the compelling performances of the two expressive leading actresses. The intense chemistry is noticeable and authentic and when it all blooms, the movie really becomes a sweet and fascinating story, with the heartbreaking reminder that it has to come to an end.
  • 0.5 of 5 stars
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    booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooringggggggggg
  • 5 of 5 stars
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    The movie is great. Different. I liked how there were not too many dialogues, or background scores; it worked solely on the amazing performance of it's lead cast. (Also no noticeable male character ha!). It makes you smile but the ending just breaks your heart.
  • 3.5 of 5 stars
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    Released pre-lockdown theatrically, I was pretty indifferent about this despite the glowing reviews it has garnered. Streaming exclusively on MUBI now, and with a free trial, I thought I would finally give it a go and I am glad I did. At 2 hours long, this slow deliberately paced French film from Celine Sciamma, sumptuously shot and elegantly composed, reminds me immediately of Jane Campion's The Piano. Noemie Merlant plays Marianne, a painter hired by Adele Haenal's Heloise's family to paint her portrait secretly for the latter's husband-to-be in Milan; and their performances are often nuanced and always confident and fearless. With Heloise's mother and a maid in supporting roles, the film isolates this group of women mostly within the four walls of their remotely situated mansion. The staging is stark and almost theatrical, with no score and just the occasional use of Vivaldi's Violin Concerto No.2, which eventually lands a formidable emotional punch in the film's final scene. Sciamma's Cannes winning script is finely tuned, often understating, yet its symmetrical structure and call-backs are wonderfully clever and beautifully written. Likewise, her visual work as a director, is full of meaningful imageries and symbolism, though I'd argue this borders sometimes on the pretentious. I can totally see this ticks a lot of boxes for critics and the issues this film covers, including an abortion subplot thrown in for good measure for the maid, are all very noble and moving, even. It's a shame then that I never feel as intensely invested or affected in their 11 day relationship, as I did watching Brokeback Mountain or God's Own Country; despite a lovely coda that brings a satisfying closure to both their relationship and the film. However, I will certainly be more enthusiastic with Sciamma's next film after this experience.
  • 5 of 5 stars
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    Every single shot of this movie looks like a piece of medieval art.
  • 3 of 5 stars
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    Interesting movie !!!
  • 5 of 5 stars
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    Amazing. It's as if a painting became alive and told a story. Beautiful love story, amazing acting, breathtaking scenery. must watch.