Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Bluebeard by Catherine Breillat on DVD


Bluebeard, the film by Catherine Breillat that received much press on the indie film circuit as well as a few entries on this blog, is now available on DVD in the U.S.  It is also available in Canada.  I'm not seeing it listed in the UK yet.

Here is the trailer. Please remember that this is Bluebeard, a favorite of Angela Carter and horror enthusiasts, a fairy tale debated as a fairy tale by many who consider it much less magical and too scary for children.

The reviews overall have been laudatory.  I have not seen the film myself, but am interested in Breillat's interpretation of such a fascinating tale.

My past entries on it are at La barbe bleu [Bluebeard] directed by Catherine Breillat (2009) and More about La barbe bleu and Q&A with Bluebeard's Catherine Breillat.

Finally, thanks to Eric C. for the heads up on this one.  Somehow it escaped all my alerts although it was released on DVD a few weeks ago.


  1. Also, for any subscribers to Netflix, Bluebeard is available to play instantly on your computer, or streamed to your TV. It's in my cue. I'll probably watch it today, as it's incredibly too hot outside to do anything.

  2. Thanks for the heads up. I've added it to my queue in Netflix.

  3. I saw it on Netflix. I wasn't very impressed with it, which is a shame because the original story is so interesting.

  4. I watched it on Netflix this evening, and it was a huge let down. I'm not sure why anyone would call it a "feminist reworking" since nothing has changed. She pays more attention to the original part where the girls are reading the story rather than the tale itself.

  5. Jazz- Exactly. I was expecting a bold feminist reworking but she didn't change the basic story at all. I was so disappointed because I found the first 20 minutes (with the girls being sent home from school after the death of their father) so good, but as soon as the Bluebeard portion started in earnest, it got boring. And when Bluebeard is boring you know something is wrong. I also didn't get the parallel story of the two sisters reading it aloud at all. It felt unnecessary.

    It was beautifully filmed, however.

  6. Erin - I had a hard time finding the parallel as well. All I came up with was that they were in a room they weren't supposed to be in, but the fact that it ended in punishment for them was so baffling since I thought this was going to shy away from the moral that girls should be obedient.

    The younger sister did crack me up! Unnecessary, but so funny.

  7. It's out in cinemas – as of yesterday – in the UK first, that will be why. And there's an interview with Breillat which may shed some light on the motivations behind it and another glowing review in the new Little White Lies magazine and online; that that review concerns itself almost only with the photography while the above comments with screenplay and (unchanged) plot may go some way to explaining why it appeals more to followers primarily of film than of literature. Both mention her following it with a La Belle au bois dormant-based film; make of that what you will.