McHale'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 13The Civil War 25th Commemorative Edition DVD & Blu-ray Oct 13Aquarius: The Complete First Season DVD & Blu-ray Sep 15Justified: The Complete Series on Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13The Surface on DVD, VOD, and DIGITAL HD Sep 1

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Adele's '25' Official First Week U.S. Sales: 3.38 Milli...
Adele announces first tour since 2011 for album "25" ...
Kathie Lee Gifford's Family Reveals Her Late Husband Fr...
American Music Awards 2015: Proximity to action matters...
Brad Pitt Says He's 'Angry' at the Finance Industry Aft...
Adele Speaks Exclusively on New Music:'The Most Poignan...
'The Walking Dead' reveals Glenn's fate ...
Adele Performs on Saturday Night Live: Video ...
Blacklisted: The Inside Story of Dalton Trumbo and the ...
Ryan Seacrest Confirms All American Idol Judges Will Re...

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

The Criterion Collection presents
The Lovers (1958)

ďFirst, Iím not witty. Second, Iím doing the best I can.Ē
- Jeanne Tournier (Jeanne Moreau)

Review By: Chuck Aliaga  
Published: June 10, 2008

Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Alain Cuny
Other Stars: Jean-Marc Bory, Juduth Magre, Josť Luis de Villalonga
Director: Louis Malle

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (adult situations, brief nudity)
Run Time: 01h:30m:43s
Release Date: May 13, 2008
UPC: 715515029629
Genre: foreign

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer

DVD Review

French filmmaker Louis Malle has made his share of classic movies, but the best-known of his early works is arguably 1958ís The Lovers. Itís most known, however, for the scandal that it caused to rage through conservative France upon its release in November of that year. The controversy centered on the filmís ďshockingĒ scene of the main female character achieving sexual pleasure at the hands of a man who isnít her husband. Of course, these days, we often see more explicit sequences on television, but in late 1950ís France (the film dealt with similar problems from Catholic Italy at that yearís Venice Film Festival) such a scene was unheard of. Avid film buffs that have yet to experience Malleís film can check it out in all of its uncut glory thanks to The Criterion Collectionís excellent new DVD release.

Jeanne Tournier (Jeanne Moreau) has it all, thanks to her marriage to wealthy press magnate Henri (Alain Cuny). However, all the wealth in the world canít keep Jeanne from being bored, so she turns to polo player Raoul (Josť Luis de Villalonga) to fulfill her sexual needs. Disguised as visits to her friend, Maggy (Judith Magre), Jeanneís trips to Paris become more frequent, arousing the suspicions of Henri. One weekend, Henri calls Jeanne back from Paris, unexpectedly, but she has no idea that he has also invited Maggy and Raoul to the estate. On her way back, the car breaks down and Jeanne is picked up by Bernard (Jean-Marc Bory), a young archaeologist who drives her back home and is asked to stay for his troubles. While initially shocked at the presence of Maggy and Raoul, it isnít long before Jeanne realizes that true love is finally staring her in the face.

The Lovers, among many other things, is a wonderful showcase for French actress Jeanne Moreau. This natural beauty had previously appeared in Malleís Elevator to the Gallows, but she reaches her peak as an actor here. Hers is an extremely complex character, a woman who thinks of nothing and no one but herself, yet Moreau somehow makes us sympathize with her. She could have done this by being bright and bubbly, but itís a testament to her acting proclivity that she doesnít have to resort to such cheap tactics to remain credible throughout. This is a performance for the ages, and one that has yet to be surpassed when compared to similar characters in cinema.

Malleís film often comes across as a Young Lady Chatterley with brains, and little explicit sex. Whereas exploitation films like that are cut and dried filth, Malle has so much more to say here that Iím instantly ashamed of the comparison. His true genius comes through in the way he portrays the Jeanne character. While Moreau adds so much to the character, Malle allows us to make our own judgments regarding her actions, a tactic that single-handedly adds depth and a need for post-viewing discussion to the film. Do we sympathize with someone who is truly unhappy with her husband? Do we change our tune when we realize sheís probably stringing along her lover as well? Has she truly found love during the filmís finale? Itís these questions that truly power The Lovers and have allowed it to stand up so well after 50 years and plenty of similar, far-inferior fare.

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: A


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio2.35:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: The film is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen, and the images are sharp and detailed throughout. This new print is practically flawless, exhibiting no dirt, grain, or other blemishes at all. While this is remarkable enough, we also see deep blacks, and excellent shadow levels at all times.

Image Transfer Grade: A


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access

Audio Transfer Review: The original French mono track is here, and everything sounds natural. The music sounds crisp and uninhibited, while being well-worked into the overall mix, along with crisp, clear dialogue.

Audio Transfer Grade: B


Disc Extras

Static menu with music
Scene Access with 17 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. Interviews
  2. U.S. Release Ė Still Gallery
Extras Review: Criterion gives us a few extra features, including a collection of interviews with Louis Malle, Jeanne Moreau, Josť Luis De Villalonga, and Louise De Vilmorin. The interviews last a total of approximately 45 minutes, and span a time period beginning around The Loversí 1958 premiere at the Cannes Film Festival and ending in 1994, when Malle was interviewed a year before his death.

Thereís also a stills gallery that chronicles the controversy surrounding the obscenity charges that were made against the film in the U.S. This is a very interesting subject thatís also laid out in the accompanying 14-page booklet.

Extras Grade: C


Final Comments

Louis Malleís The Lovers was not only a lightning rod for controversy upon its release, but it was also a crossroads for sexuality in French cinema. Powered by an amazing performance by Jeanne Moreau, Malleís film is a riveting character story 50 years later. The Criterion Collection works their magic again with this stellar release, complete with excellent audio and video transfers and some great extras as well.


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search


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


Microsoft Store


music, adele, 25, 3.38 million copies, nsync, no strings attached, 21, tour europe, spotify, apple music, pandora music inc., television, frank gifford, nfl hall of famer, sportscaster, chronic traumatic encephalopathy, kathy lee gifford, american music awards, talor swift, one direction, jennifer lopez, selena gomez, nicki minaj, justin bieber, movie, the big short, steve carell, ryan gosling, christian bale, michael lewis, brad pitt, hello, 19, the walking dead, amc, davod alpert, glen, heads up, saturday night live, 25 album, skyfall, nrj awards, graham norton, herbert biberman, john howard lawson, lester cole, ring lardner jr., samuel ornitz, adrian scott, albert maltz, alvah bessie, edward dmytryk, dalton trumbo, reality, american idol, ryan seacrest, mariah carey, ellen degeneres, harry connick jr., keith urban, simon cowell, paula abdul, randy jackson, steven tyler, kara dioguardi, televison, fargo, fx, kirsten dunst, jesse plemons, jean smart, jeffrey donovan, bokeem woodbine, brad garrett, patrick wilson, celebrity, bruce willis, laurie metcalf, misery, broadway debut, paris tragedy, u2, foo fighters, steven spielberg, natalie portman, book, the diary of anne frank, otto frank, swiss foundation, daytime talk, 2000 shows, justin timberlake, jennifer aniston, sequel, animated, finding nemo, finding dory, disney-pixar, diane keaton, eugene levy, inventor, hedy lamarr, google doodle, ecstasy, samson and delilah, bbc music, angelina jolie pitt, by the sea, troubled marriage, mr. & mrs. smith, gwen stefani blake shelton, country music awards, the voice, miranda lambert, jon stewart, john oliver, hbo, wonder woman, nicole kidman, amazonian warrior, gal gadot, chris pine, nick lachey, 98 degrees, pot grower, ohio, nanette lepore, oscar robertson, frostee rucker, the red bulletin, james bond, daniel craig, naomi harris, bond girl, a. o. scott, 1977, star wars, elvis, beatles, sesame street, j.k. rowling, israel, palestine, culture for coexistence, harry potter and the deathly hallows, ricky gergais, 2016 golden globes, hollywood foreign press association, jessica biel, 2015 fashion group international night of stars gala, flip phone, the power of love, huey lewis, michael j. fox, back to the future

On Facebook!
Promote Your Page Too



Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

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