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Controversial filmmaker Catherine Breillat puts a new spin on an ancient story in this multileveled drama. In France in the mid-'50s, Catherine (Marilou Lopes-Benites) enjoys toying with her older sister, Marie-Anne (Lola Giovannetti), by reading her the story of the murderous and oft-married Bluebeard, embellishing the story with plenty of gore and scaring the girl out of her wits. As Catherine rereads the story, we're taken back to the year 1697, as Lord Bluebeard (Dominique Thomas) prepares to make Marie-Catherine (Lola Créton) his seventh wife. Marie-Catherine's youth and… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 78%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Breillat has produced her funniest and most immediately pleasurable film to date."
‑ David Fear, Time Out
"A movie that has all the when-will-he-draw-the-scimitar suspense of Friday the 13th as made by Robert Bresson. In other words, none at all."
‑ Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly
"Breillat's ideas owes much to Angela Carter, yet The Bloody Chamber author would surely be depressed by the lack of dynamism on display."
‑ Charlotte O'Sullivan, This is London
"While it contains more layers than a slab of Viennetta, this might actually be Breillat's most accessible film to date. Just don't expect anyone to live happily ever after."
‑ Sophie Ivan, Film4
"Breillat's chamber-piece of oblique eroticism is beautifully designed and acted but rendered slightly unsatisfying by a pointless second level of narrative reality."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"A simple device, the parallel structure freshens and enlarges the familiar story precisely because Breillat doesn't put too much weight on it."
‑ Mark Feeney, Boston Globe
"All fairy tales have morals and the one in Ms. Breillat's Bluebeard is brutal, suitably bloody and, like all good retellings, both similar to and different from earlier iterations."
‑ Manohla Dargis, New York Times
"Murky and cold, this retelling of the fairy tale has an effectively grim tone that cleverly plays with our expectations while examining some provocative themes. But it's not very engaging."
‑ Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
"It's a playful approach, but Breillat's flat visual style and the deliberately stiff and austere performances she gets from her actors make this more of a chore than it should be."
‑ Alistair Harkness, Scotsman
"Taking itself too seriously is just the first of many grave offences committed by the wretched Bluebeard."
‑ James O'Brien, Daily Mail [UK]
"Those looking for a re-interpretation of a classic fairytale will certainly find it in Bluebeard. They just won't find a very good one."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"Bluebeard revisits themes often found in Breillat's films -- sibling rivalry, pedophilia, gender conflict -- but it remains fresh and new."
‑ V.A. Musetto, New York Post
"Catherine Breillat's move from arthouse provocations to ponderous period dramas continues with this austere, slyly experimental adaptation of Charles Perrault's grisly classic."
‑ Kate Stables, Total Film
"Complex, comic and discomfiting. So, vintage Breillat..."
‑ Sophie Ivan, Little White Lies
"It's a surreal little film with an intriguing Freudian subtext and a haunting blend of magic and gritty realism."
‑ David Edwards, Daily Mirror [UK]
More reviews for Bluebeard on Rotten Tomatoes