Aug 12, 2009
A butterfly flew out of the screen, scattering crimson hues of the lambent sky. Her magic potion transcends you to a celestial orchestra, performed by a zillion enthusiastic stars. You’re serenaded in their craft; you’re soaked in her colour. But it only lasts for 122 minutes. Ask Jean Paul Jeunette why?
The fabulous destiny of Amelie Poulian offers a boulevard of sights and sounds. Its strength lies in its incredible ability to move the audience in extravagant frames of simple nuances. An ordinary tale becomes a fable as an ordinary girl plays the role of a neighborhood cherub. Incidentally that is.
Amelie is brought up in the grief-struck environs of her nonchalant father. She is forced to spend her life in the confines of loneliness, just when hope meets her in an unsolicited treasure box. She gives in to her instincts and decides to trace its bearer. The spirit of mankind beguiles her to help the needy around. Amelie then finds her smiles floating on the ebb and flow of universe’s woe. She is rewarded with love wrapped in joys of companionship.
The music of the film intensifies its sensual experience. The piano impeccably gauges the mood of the film. Mellow in few scenes, gregarious in some. The soundtrack by Yan Tiersen brews a plethora of emotions. Dull yet reflective, gentle yet powerful, it compels you to plunge into the realms of the character. It’s when her conundrum becomes yours and her strife begins to taste mildly sweet.
It’s not the first time when the director has left his audience quivering in awe. The film bears the subtle tone of his earlier works Delicatessen and City of Lost Children. He cleverly uses the comical device he introduced in his film Foutaises; a sing-song narration of he likes/she likes. The editing unfailingly transforms vital scenes to a set of individual artifacts. Cinematographic dexterity gleams through the introductory scenes of the primary characters, including an angora cat.
Life and its complexity whispers through simple yet eccentric imagery. Eccentric being the operational word here. “A sperm with an X chromosome belonging to Rapheal Poulain made a dash for an egg with his wife Amadine and Amelie is born”
Audrey Tautou(playing Amelie) carries the weight of the film in her elfin eyes, setting a sky-high benchmark for her acting prowess. In her foreign syllables she appears profoundly familiar, sketching the character through per plum cheeks and facial lines.
The film overall is a multi-sensorial indulgence. It induces us to see the world through a fair dash of fantasy, soft strokes of imagination and a lot of hope. voila! A recipe for la vie en rose.