Review: Clouds of Sils Maria

There's more than that.

Maria Enders (Juliette Binoche) is a actress whose career was launched 20+ years ago in a play where she played a young seductress. Now she's been asked to be a part of the play again, only in the role of the older women her character seduces. She's torn as she feels connected to her previous part. Her assistant Valentine (Kristen Stewart) attempts to get her to see the play in a different light. The part she had previously is now being played by a young wild child actress Jo-Ann Ellis. (Chloe Grace Moretz) 

This film got quite a bit of buzz at Cannes last year, then felt like it dropped off the face of the planet. When I went to the theater to buy my ticket, the guy that sold me it told me the booking people emailed them this movie out of the blue on Friday and told them to play it. They'd never heard of it.  Still, I'm glad it came around and I finally got to see it after hearing so many wonderful things about the performances.

Binoche and Stewart are both spectacular in this film. Binoche was perfect as Maria, trying to let go of the past and embrace this new challenge. Stewart was my favorite as Val, who tries so hard to get Maria to see things her way. Val reminded me of the blogging community a bit. Trying to explain the deeper meaning of a movie while Maria (non cinephiles) stares at her like she's crazy.

The film gets slow in parts, especially between the first and second act. It seems the director wanted to give this a play vibe, but I thought that made the editing look a bit choppy. Still, it's beautifully shot and features excellent performances from its leads.

Recommended: Yes

Grade: B-

Memorable Quote: "The text is like an object, it will change perspective based on where you're standing." - Valentine (Kristen Stewart)


18 comments:

  1. Great review :) I'm sure there's loads of great stuff to pick apart with this film, but I just found to long and dry.

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    1. It did get long, but it actually was shorter than I expected. My theater had it listed as 2 1/2 hours, but with previews it was done in 2 hrs 15 mins.

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  2. This sounds quite good, despite its flaws. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

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    1. You're welcome. I hope you check it out and like it!

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  3. Glad to hear this got a theatrical release here in MN, even for a brief time. I enjoyed this one and was wowed by Stewart whom I've never been fond of. I always love miss Binoche though and she is superb!

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    1. I think this might be Stewart's best role that I've seen. Previously it was The Cake Eaters.

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  4. I'm always up for some good Stewart, though there is no way in Hell any theater around me will show it. That might take a screen away from Paul Blart.

    I mean, what are we, savages?

    (Great post!)

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    1. lol fucking Paul Blart. The real masterpiece here.

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  5. I have faith in your recommendations. This one hasn't made its way here yet at all but i will be checking it out when it does.

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  6. I can't wait to see this. I love Binoche, and Stewart's Cesar win is no joke.

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    1. They definitely deserve it. Especially Stewart, I thought she was fantastic.

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  7. CAN'T. WAIT. Glad to hear more great things about the performances. :)

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    1. They're wonderful. I think you'll dig it.

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  8. Great review Brittani and another great find. I don't think I've even heard of this film. I'm thrilled that Stewart is working again after the Snow White film. I haven't seen Binoche in a while.

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    1. Stewart has really been getting great reviews in everything she's done lately. Still Alice, Sils, I haven't seen Camp X-Ray yet, but she got raves for that as well.

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  9. Glad you liked it and I love your comment about bloggers! Stewart was my favorite here too, I'm glad people are finally appreciating her as an actress

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  10. I hope more people check out her non Twilight work because she can be very good.

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