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Enzo and Jacques have known each other for a long time. Their friendship started in their childhood days in the Mediterranean. They were not real friends in these days, but there was something they both loved and used to do the whole day long: diving. One day Jacques' father, who was a diver too, died in the Mediterranean sea. After that incident Enzo and Jacques lost contact. After several years, Enzo and Jacques had grown up, Johanna, a young clerk in a security office, has to go to Peru. There she meets Jacques who works for a group of scientists. He dives for some minutes into ice-cold water and the scientists monitor his physical state that is more like a dolphin's than a human's. Johanna can not believe what she sees and gets very interested in Jacques but she's unable to get acquainted with him. Some weeks later, back in her office, she notices a championship for divers that is supposed to take place in Taormina, Italy. In order to see Jacques again she makes up a story so the ... Written by
Reiner Rosin <email@example.com>
The Big Blue is a story mainly centred around Jacques Mayol (Jean-Marc Barr), a free diver. Free diving is a sport where people dive as deep as they can with a single breath, and no equipment other than a rope and a weighted mechanism to take them to the required depth. Although to say the story of Big Blue is just about free diving does not do it any justice. The story starts in Greece with Jacques as a child, then moves forward to "present day". In the story we also have Enzo (Jean Reno), Jacque's lifelong friend and nemesis who motivates him to free dive in competition (so he has some competition) and also gets him work in other areas of diving. During this work Jacques meets an insurance investigator Johana (Rosanna Arquette), and a romance starts (albeit mostly from her). The story continues as Jacques struggles with problems in his past, present and future.
The Big Blue is an unusual movie. There is some silly (but arguably funny) humour. Also there are some serious levels including romance, and how we deal with problems from our past, our existence, and our future. The film is also quite long (in the aptly named "version longue") at about 2 hours and 40 minutes. Fans of Jean Reno would certainly love this movie.
I really enjoyed this film. The main story is very light and thinly stretched, so to really enjoy it I feel you have to look deeper at the characters and read between the lines. I also really enjoyed the humour, which was silly but fun and was a good counterpoint to the serious scenes. Jean-Marc Barr was absolutely stunning as Jacques, bearing in mind the number of underwater sequences that were required as well. It's a real shame that we don't see Jean-Marc in more leading roles. Jean Reno was also extremely good, and although for me an irritating character Rosanna Arquette put in a reasonable performance. The cinematography is another lush element of the film, with the beautiful locations and underwater sequences (especially those with the dolphins). Eric Serra's soundtrack is pretty good also, although sounds a little dated. As mentioned, this review is based on the "version longue". 5/5
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