Murphy is an American living in Paris who enters a highly sexually and emotionally charged relationship with Electra. Unaware of the effect it will have on their relationship, they invite th... Read allMurphy is an American living in Paris who enters a highly sexually and emotionally charged relationship with Electra. Unaware of the effect it will have on their relationship, they invite their pretty neighbor into their bed.Murphy is an American living in Paris who enters a highly sexually and emotionally charged relationship with Electra. Unaware of the effect it will have on their relationship, they invite their pretty neighbor into their bed.
The film is directed really well by Noé, who by now should know well enough how to make it all super claustrophobic and uncomfortable for the viewer. The cinematography is good but relies too heavily on saturation but it's never really an issue. Nonlinear storytelling is clear, concise, and there's some really neat editing at parts. The story does drag often, and the film overall could've cut out 10-15 minutes of filler.
The real issue with "Love" is the lack of chemistry between Murphy and Elektra -- we just don't see it, pretty much ever. The writing is there, but the actors just cannot grasp it. This is largely because -- are you ready? -- they aren't actors; Noé met both Glusman and Muyock in a club one night and asked them to star. It's clear that he wanted to achieve the most organic and natural relationship dynamic on-screen by not using "real actors" -- but in what is supposed to be an emotionally charged film, that just doesn't work.
In fact, in a sort of disturbingly surreal manner, the very same issues that the film is trying to highlight in millennial relationships (emotional maturity and boundaries over sex) seem to show up in the unsimulated sex scenes between Glusman and Muyock. Glusman constantly falls out of character, allowing his own sexual desire to ruin the scene and any emotional impact Noé was looking for. Muyock seems bored and uninterested -- and who could blame her? -- likely due to Glusman's obvious zeal about getting paid to fuck her. I'm not sure he entirely understood the fact he was in an art film, and in remaining ignorant, he ends up verifying Noé's entire thesis: young adults, especially men, get lost in the idea of sexual nirvana over the thing that truly matters: love.
The second half of the film lifts the veil on Murphy's narcissistic and emotionally abusive behavior in the relationship, and tragically, Glusman is a good actor when portraying an unstable douchebag (and Muyock is phenomenal when screaming at him).
The film finishes the same place it starts, seeming to depict Murphy at rock-bottom in a horrible and accidental family dynamic: a fitting bookend to a relationship that was destroyed not by too much sex, but his own fear of it. The ending is eerie and powerful, and hints at the generational ripples that will be felt for decades because of his own actions. It's a great story, and sort of well-acted, but it ends up merely tripping up on its own interpretation of reality instead of offering us anything particularly new.
- Jul 16, 2018