Regular Lovers Screen 7 articles

Regular Lovers

2005

Regular Lovers Poster
  • [Out 1] is fully tuned into 60s madness and [The Mother and the Whore] is equally tuned into 60s neurosis. But Garrel’s lament is neither desperate nor angry, and his `regular’ lovers are basically innocents, basking or drowning in the banality of bourgeois comforts. Maybe my friends and I were doing the same thing, but I can’t recognize the portrait either poetically or otherwise. Rightly or wrongly, we were fighting a game that had stakes; these charming deadbeats don’t appear to be.

  • William Lubtchansky’s crisp black-and-white cinematography renders textures of stone and faces with an austere, classical power that gives gravity to Garrel’s scenario of politics, love, and hashish. And the film isn’t just a kind of reconstitution; it’s also the record of a present-time struggle to exist for themselves rather than being just the dream, or even the dialectic, of an aging director looking at his past.

  • Regular Lovers is a sad, admiring movie about love at 20, basking in the flare of the impossible potential pompous kids can find in the world, and the loveliness of that impossibility.

  • Though glimpsing paradise in fleeting moments (as when François watches a pulsing vein in the sleeping Lilie’s neck), Garrel shows that the world that came after the revolt belongs to practical people with their feet on the ground. If someone other than the aesthetically radical director said this, it might seem reactionary, but here it’s a rueful retrospective gaze on Garrel’s own youth and its illusions.

  • With its attention to detail and character, Regular Lovers is novelistic, albeit in a special way—the characters have little inner life and engage in relatively few actions. Ambiance is all. A fondness for cutting from mid-scene to mid-scene and a few primitive dream sequences notwithstanding, Garrel's most daring device is his use of duration. Ultimately this languid tone comes to seem a strategy, quite poignant, to extend youth as long as possible.

  • The beauty of the film — the shimmering black-and-white tones and the purity of the compositions, at once austere and harmonious — suggests that the director sees this layover less as a retreat into narcissism than as a necessary journey into the self.

  • A minute film about epic ideas, the director's most articulate work, a defeated movie about self-styled idealists... There's no pageantry here, just images of young people's oily, pimply faces, their sweat-stained shirts and tangled hair, the slow trickling of time that comes with indecisiveness and boredom.

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