Les Parapluies de Cherbourg

Did you like La La Land? Or were you trying to find something more heartstring-tugging? Go watch the Umbrellas of Cherbourg! 

Directed by Jacques Demy and featuring an entirely sung script, it’s one of the best musicals I’ve encountered. It’s surprising how beautifully everything is put together and well-considered, and that it even looks like a modern day musical put to film even though it came out in 1964. I read that Demy specifically wanted the film to be saturated in colour, and frankly it’s stunning. 

The story itself seems to be your classic bittersweet romance-slash-Bildungsroman-type movie, but perhaps back in the day this was an entirely unexplored ground…(? Let me know your thoughts). Nevertheless I felt that it was definitely on a whole new level compared to La La Land, which seemed to drag a bit. I read somewhere that Damien Chazelle took inspiration from Parapluies when he was directing La La Land, and if that’s the case the similarities are extremely obvious. While both have a similar story (although Chazelle’s universe is distinctly modern), they also incorporate dazzling colour to stunning effect. But to be honest, I felt more attached to Parapluies (and honestly didn’t like Sebastian very much). 

With that being said, I do like the soundtrack for La La Land and the classic “I Will Wait For You” from Parapluies. If you don’t want to get an ear worm, avoid these songs at all costs! Also, Catherine Deneuve reminds me of a cross between Jane Birkin and Audrey Hepburn. 

Photograph from http://www.filmosaure.com/2013/06/20/les-parapluies-de-cherbourg-1964-2/

Watch a clip of the movie here (no copyright intended):

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