Praised by the critics as "delicate , mysterious, and exiting", "an original and entertaining metaphor for film-watching and, perhaps, film history", and named "The most radical and delightful narrative film since Citizen Kane! The experience of a lifetime" by New York's critic David Thompson, "Celine and Julie Go Boating" (1974) is all of the above but first of all it is incredible fun to watch. This magic candy of a movie tells the story (or rather plays with the story) of two friends, Julie, a librarian and Celine, a magician. The film starts one sunny summer day in Paris when Julie follows running through the park and losing her stuff all over (a scarf, a shoe
) Celine exactly like another girl in the English country side one sunny summer day had followed a White Rabbit into a world of her imagination. Two girls became friends and soon with the help of a magic memory-inducing candy, they both will be the observers and participants in a bizarre soap-opera like drama that takes place in a mysterious house. It involves two stunningly beautiful women, a blonde and a brunette, who are in love with the same man. The man is a widower with a young daughter who had promised his wife that he would not remarry as long as their daughter is alive. When the blonde and the brunette become desperate enough to try to do something about the situation, it is up to Julie and Celine to come up with the plan and to rescue the young girl. Will they go boating? Well, you will have to stay with them for all 193 minutes to find out. Yes, Rivette takes his time but his movie never seems slow or boring. Playful yet complicated, mad and funny, "Celine and Julie" is a magic movie. It grabbed me from the opening scene - which is of course the opening chapter of "Alice in Wonderland" - and it never let go. Buniel would love this movie, I think. It also reminds me of "Mullholand Dr" and even "Persona" but in the absolutely different mode. Simply DELIGHTFUL.