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Portrait of a Lady on Fire Rated 15

Portrait of a Lady on Fire

Dir. Céline Sciamma. France, 2019. 2h 2m. French/Italian/subs. Starring Noémie Merlant, Adèle Haenel, Luàna Bajrami, Valeria Golino, Christel Baras, Armande Boulanger.

On an isolated island in 18th-century Brittany, painter Marianne is commissioned by a countess to paint a wedding portrait for her daughter, hoping it will find her a wealthy husband. As the two women grow closer, their intimacy and attraction begins to blossom. Romance and art entwine in Céline Sciamma’s (Tomboy, Girlhood) ravishing period piece, told with a distinctly modern feminist edge.

‘Sciamma’s gorgeous romantic film concerns itself almost entirely with the unseen powers of the gaze…Real love may be fleeting, but as Portrait of a Lady on Fire explains, art and memory are immortal.’ ★★★★★ Clarisse Loughery, The Independent

‘A superbly elegant, enigmatic drama that compels a shiver of aesthetic pleasure and fear…I was on the edge of my seat. Portrait of a Lady on Fire has something of Alfred Hitchcock’ ★★★★★ Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian