vanessa’s review published on Letterboxd:
Often regarded as the least memorable movie by the French/Argentinian filmmaker, I’m actually very fond of this film, as it’s probably one of my favorite romance movies in recent years (although I must admit I’m not an expert of this specific genre, check at my reviews).
The story, which is told through the constant use of flashbacks and flashforwards, revolves around Murphy, an American cinema school student who lives in Paris. He’s had a French girlfriend, Electra, in the movie, we get to experience how their relationship ended, how that affected both Murphy’s and Electra’s life. Love is extremely controversial mostly due to its graphic depiction of sex: when Murphy and Electra, early on in the film, engage in a threesome with teenage Danish girl Omi to save their relationship, the sex scene is really in-your-face, with the camera not shying away from anything. Literally. The most disturbing aspect of the film, however, is when – a few years after these events that caused Electra to break up with Murphy – Murphy is told his ex-girlfriend has disappeared and starts to remember the two years he spent with her. The viewer is, then, subjected to experiencing a two-year-long relationship fuelled by drug abuse, violence, rough sex. There are some tender moments nonetheless, but they’re quite scattered throughout.
Despite lacking in strong performances and interesting cinematography, I appreciate this movie for the uncomfortable feeling it leaves me with. Also, it’s quite intriguing and scary at the same time to see how a person could consider an abuse/devastating relationship to be true love. I think Love is a really powerful film, which features powerful messages about relationships, a search for happiness and regret. Sex and nudity in mainstream cinema are just to sexualize women as always the industry does, but in Love they’re integral to the story and help to build up characters and emotions: without the graphic and disturbing depiction of sex, Love would probably have a third of its actual impact. An impact that gets to its climax at the end of the film, which is something you really need to see for yourself. Needless to say, I’d recommend this movie as well.