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LOVE (review)


Written and Directed by Gaspar Noé / Starring Karl Glusman, Klara Kristin and Aoimi Muyock

Murphy: A young person without love is like a sparrow without air. Oh, you didn’t know you could fly?

“The Management Warns You…” in the opening title card of Gaspar Noé’s sexually graphic film LOVE. And just in case unsimulated sex scenes didn’t make you uncomfortable enough already, the film is also shot in gloriously stunning 3D, happy endings and all. Noé is known for his subversive films that challenge viewers, and it almost seems wrong to call LOVE his most accessible film, but it certainly isn’t one that will leave you feeling raw and depraved like I STAND ALONE or ENTER THE VOID. This is not a movie about violence; it is, much like the title says, about love, told through the sentimentality of sex.

The storyline is rather basic; film student Murphy (Karl Glusman) lives with his girlfriend Omi (Klara Kristin) and their son Gaspar (yes, roll your eyes) in their apartment in France. Murphy gets a call from his ex-girlfriend’s mother, wondering if he has seen or heard from her as she has been missing for several months. This sets in motion Murphy’s recounting of his relationship with Electra (Aoimi Muyock) as told mostly through their sexual experiences, including how the three of them met.


The sex is graphic and real, which won’t be for everyone. The saving grace that sets it apart from sex for sex’s sake is how beautifully each scene is filmed and choreographed. The lighting makes everything look like a polished photoshoot and and the camera angles highlight simple moments, like a hand on a breast. There is a certain tenderness to every scene, even the ones that make the characters uncomfortable as they explore their sexuality. The camera doesn’t shy away and the 3D adds a wonderful depth that never comes across as too gimmicky, (save for one scene, but you’ll know it when you see it as it’s quite literally in your face).

The self-referencing on Noé’s part does get laughable at times, but it is, after all, his film. LOVE is beautiful, sad, powerful, heartbreaking and uncomfortable, but that is all the more reason to “love” it.

4.5 sheep


Your turn!

How many sheep would you give Love?


One Comment

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed Love. It is a beautiful and engaging look at the thin line between sex and love … how we use sex to express love and how electric that can be … how we confuse sex for love … and how we can take sex too far and ruin love altogether. I found it a tad self indulgent … using his own name in the film several times gets a few laughs but it ultimately takes you out of the narrative and comes off as amateurish. And I’m not sure I would have written the main character as a filmmaker because he often comes off as a mouthpiece for the director, which I found too plain at times. Ultimately, I felt Noe captured a great tenderness that is often elusive on film. To call the film Love might be over reaching a bit given that this story is very specific and not as universal as the title suggests. I didn’t find it heartbreaking because none of the characters elicit any sympathy but I was transfixed and enamoured throughout. Regardless, I still have plenty of love for Love.

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