Jealousy (La Jalousie) Review – Potential Passion Falls Flat

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Jealousy "La Jalousie," from Distrib Films and Director Philippe Garrel,  presents a self congratulatory look back at the power men have over the women who adore him and finally in full circle understands the all consuming power of the lover who leaves.


"La Jalousie" stars Louis Garrel, Anna Mouglalis, Rebecca Convenant, Olga Milshtein and Esther Garrel and is written and directed by Philippe Garrel.

"La Jalousie" revolves around Louis, played by Louis Garrel, the son of Philippe, a 30 something Peter Pan still looking for love believing that relationship and devotion of his wife and daughter are second to the thrill of emotion as hidden lusts and renew sexual bursts cause the raging hormones of youth to burst with the same intensity.

Allowing his passion to lead him, he leaves his wife and family for the belief that his mistress, Claudia, played by Anna Mouglalis, who is accustomed to well kept and happy, and alas the avant-garde artist non-paying theater company is good for the moment, a how low can you go, even if it is good and tolerate  the absences. She has her limits and when she reaches it she leaves, as her new lover as bought her a home.

She explains, the home, with the exception of a single night is for them, the two of them, he of course, accustomed to being the center of every woman's attention cannot fathom this week's love of his life has actually a lover who can meet her financial needs also.

The implosion sends Peter Pan over the edge and in order to get the love of his life back, he shoots himself, not in an attempted suicide, as he points the gun to his chest so far from center if the kick moves his arm he'll hit the walls.

As it is the bullet does make contact and our Peter Pan, is now hospitalized as his sister, played by Esther Garrel, enabler of his needs waits by his bedside, when he wakes and asks, he realizes the new love is now lost.

"La Jalousie" takes a brave step as "Jealousy" is entirely shot in Black and White, which I suppose is could be an analogy of the emotion in its purest form as it is or it is not, with no grey area associated the driving force behind it.

I must say I felt cheated of the Parisian cinematic experience as our main character lives on what I believe to be the Left Bank, the artistic side of the Seine, and as they all face their dull existences, with brief respites as the child livens things up between her father and his new lover, the only escape is the city.

By the end of the film his real identity, a 30 something Peter Pan, is exposed as every woman in his life takes gentle care of him, nursing his every whim, and need. Without the cinematic experience, of enjoying the external shots of Paris, "Jealousy" left me void.

I suppose it is a miracle and accomplishment any film gets made and so it must be the same with this one.  Obviously, when a film generates such a strong reaction, good, bad or indifferent, something in the film worked.

Possibly, as I view films as a spectator and leave the review until after the experience, the dullness translated with the choices by the director which conversely others could say strips away the externals and forces the talent to up the bar.  

"Jealousy" is difficult to understand not from a feminist view point as I don't consider myself feminist but simply as someone who is mentally stable how does one become so entangled and led by ones emotions that no matter where they lead, fleeting emotions, bi-polar emotions, never stable, will follow them.

The rush of new love, lust and even peel me off the ceiling sex, which is apparently what our Peter Pan felt every time, is more a sign I think of the need for medicine.

Anyway, the child actress, Olga Milshtein was quite good. In fact the entire cast obviously caused a reaction. Therefore is there cinematic merit to "La Jalousie"? I am left now to say yes. Although, I wouldn't waste the time seeing the film.

"La Jalousie" is in French with English subtitles.

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