05/26/2016  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

'Nashville': 12 Best Music Moments From TV Series ...
The Voice Finale: Alisan Porter Wins Season 10 ...
Pink's Hairstylist on Her Billboard Music Awards Look...
Adele's Send My Love to Your New Lover video: Director ...
Bryan Cranston Mesmerizes as LBJ in HBO's 'All the Way'...
Kristin Chenoweth takes on a different kind of role ...
Survivor: Kaoh Rong: And the winner is... ...
Ghostbusters Are Desperately Trying to Save New York Ci...
The Beach Boys' 'Pet Sounds' Turns 50: How Brian Wilson...
Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom Pack on the PDA at Cannes ...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Sony Picture Classics presents
Lila Says (Lila dit ça) (2004)

"See? I have an angel's face. Everyone says so."
- Lila (Vahina Giocante)

Review By: Rich Rosell  
Published: November 28, 2005

Stars: Vahina Giocante, Mohammed Khouas
Other Stars: Karim Ben Haddou, Carmen Lebbos, Hamid Dkhissi, Lotfi Chakri, Edmonde Franchi, Stéphanie Fatout, Ghandi Assad
Director: Ziad Doueiri

MPAA Rating: R for strong sexual content, language, a brief violent image
Run Time: 01h:30m:35s
Release Date: November 29, 2005
UPC: 043396125520
Genre: foreign


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A A+B+B D

DVD Review

Chimo (Mohammed Khouas) is a 19-year-old Muslim living with his mother in a poor, cramped area outside of Marseilles, and we learn during a voiceover from him that his "life is made up of tiny, useless bits." He is tempted with an enticement from one of his teachers to attend a writing course in Paris, but money is of course an object, and he seems to feel hopelessly trapped in his dead-end neighborhood. The post-9/11 tensions have obviously run just as high in France as they have elsewhere (witness the recent Paris riots), and Chimo and his three thug pals waste their days doing nothing particularly productive. A turning point occurs when Lila (Vahina Giocante), a blonde 16 year old, moves into the largely Arabic community, causing an emotional domino effect of sexual urges to surface.

The first time we see Lila—through the viewfinder of Chimo's video camera—is just after the opening credits, as she is describing in lyrically poetic terms how others see her beauty. She ends her discourse with a startlingly frank question, asking Chimo if he would like to see a certain part of her anatomy. From that moment on director Ziad Doueiri paints the enigmatic Lila as a blend of Lolita-esque temptress and secure woman-child who is relaxed and comfortable with the power of her blossoming sexuality. Chimo and Lila, a modern-day variation of Romeo and Juliet, are drawn to one another as all opposites eventually attract, as both characters flirt and brood as their relationship slowly takes root.

Doueiri adapted the screenplay from the controversial book allegedly by the real-life Chimo, and chunks of the plot are driven in large part by the voiceover narration from his writings, read by Mohammed Khouas, describing the tumultuous effect the girl has had on Chimo's life. It's a natural mix of lust and love, played with a pleasant gentleness by Khouas, as Chimo is drawn into the sexual dynamo that is Giocante's Lila, who imbues the young girl with a uniquely grounded grasp on the power of sex as a lifeforce. Lila has so transfixed Chimo that even when he is out cruising for girls with his friends he envisions the blonde teenager on the hood of the car as they drive through town.

Lila Says is refreshingly frank and honest in its discussion of sexuality, but this isn't just a series of overwrought taboo monologues or artsy preachings, and Doueiri eventually assembles the pieces to deliver an unpredictably sweet romance that is equal parts unconventional, brutal, and gentle. It's an off-balance combination, but the performances by Khouas and Giocante are exceptional throughout, giving Doueiri's film a solid emotional center.

As a sidebar to the film itself, there is a scene that appears to have been intentionally altered. I'm a little perplexed as to why Sony felt compelled to digitally blur the sexually explicit images from a graphic novel that Lila and Chimo are reading, especially in a film whose entire infrastructure is built on raw sexuality. It's a very brief scene, but it does figure strongly thematically, and the blurring really minimizes the effect of the intended punch this moment should have had, and it smacks of pick-and-choose censorship. My optimistic side hopes it was a result of some copyright issue, and not outright content control.

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: A+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: Nice job from Sony on the 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer on this one, with a steady palette of bright, crisp colors and well-defined edge detail. The print itself is very clean, with no trace of debris or specking, and no evidence of grain. A small flaw is some minor shimmer and edge enhancement, but it is on the moderate side, and hardly a major hindrance.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.0
Frenchno


Audio Transfer Review: The sole audio option is a 5.0 French language track. Dialogue is simple and clean, with no distortion, and most of the sound is split across the front channels, with very little in the way of rear channel cues whatsoever. Ziad Doueiri employs a number of songs on the soundtrack during the course of the film, and the presentation lacks the proper depth and punch to really enhance the dramatic effect.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 12 cues
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
7 Other Trailer(s) featuring The Baxter, Me And You And Everyone We Know, The Ballad of Jack and Rose, 2046, Heights, Yes, Saraband
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extras Review: The only extras are a set of assorted trailers, led by the promising Michael Showalter comedy The Baxter. The disc is cut into 12 chapters, with optional English subtitles.

Extras Grade: D

 

Final Comments

Here's a beautifully compelling and unconventional romance, full of forbidden relationships and frank sexuality all connected by the weak-kneed and numbing power of finding one's true love. Provocative, daring and surprisingly sentimental, Ziad Doueiri's film delivers strongly on all emotional cylinders.

One of the year's best. Highly recommended.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, nashville, abc, music city, grand ole opry, chip esten, lennon stella, the voice, alisan porterm, christina aguilera, ceelo green, ariana grande, sia, the little big town, 2016 billboard music awards, pink, just like fire, pamela neal, warrior princess, music, send my love (to your new lover), billboard music awards, adele, patrick daughters, hbo, bryan cranston, lbj, all the way, melissa leo, frank langella, todd weeks, movie, hard sell, kristin chenoweth, wicked, survivor: kaoh-rong, reality, michelle fitzgerald, aubry, tai, jeff probst, comedy remake, ghostbusters, melissa mccarthy, kristen wiig, kate mckinnon, leslie jones, beach boys, pet sounds, brian wilson, bob dylan, blonde on blonde, cannes film festival, selena gomez, beyonce, crazy in love, lemonade, sorry, donŐt hurt yourself, daddy lessons, dancing with the stars, nyle dimarco, bruno tonioli, carrie ann inaba, len goodman, live! with kelly and michael, kelly ripa michael strahan, beyoncŽ, jay z, rachel roy, cheating, prince, little red corvette, purple rain, linus and lucy, the bourne supremacy, the bourne ultimatum, matt damon, alicia vikander, vincent cassel, tommy lee jones, julia stiles, paul greengrass, game of thrones, sansa, ramsay bolton, theron greyjoy, reek, petyr baelish, cersei, jaime, stephen colbert, hillary clinton, carnegie deli, the late show with stepen colbert, jungle book, disney, neel sethi, bill murray, rudyard kipling, captain america: civil war, captain america, iron man, black panther, scarlet witch, the jungle book, virtual productions, avatar, gravity, jon favreau, fantasy, james cameron, avatar sequels, avatar 2, christmas 2018, movies, tribeca film festival, the first monday in may, andrew rossi, justin bieber, anna wintour, met gala, 38 interactive and virtual-reality exhibits, the bomb, the meddler, j.j. abrams, chris rock, tom hanks, john oliver, elvis & nixon, mtv movie awards, dwayne johnson, kevin hart, warner bros. studios, will smith, suicide squad, jared leto, margot robbie, cara delevingne, kiss, freedom to rock, 35 date tour, july 7, caleb johnson, dead daisies, kiss online, merle haggard, died, okie from muskogee, sing me back, mama tried, the bakersfield sound, country music. willie nelson, waylon jennings, gram parsons, eric church, hungry eyes, jimmy fallon, the boss, brand new key, x gonna give it to ya, miles ahead, don cheadle, miles davis, rock and roll hall of fame, ewan mcgregor, michael stuhbarg, lakeith lee stanfield, house of lies, finding dory, ellen degeneres, finding nemo, albert brooks, hayden rolence, animation

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store