Thursday, 5 May 2011

Béatrice Dalle in "37°2 le Matin" BR1080 [France 1986]

Jean-Jacques Beineix's drama "37°2 le Matin" [Eng. Title: Betty Blue, Festival Title: 37°2 in the Morning] is probably his finest work to date - it was also nominated for Oscar, BAFTA and César the following year.

The romantic saga starts on a warm afternoon with Betty arriving at Zorg's cabin by the sea - she had just quit her barmaid job after an argument with the owner. When she tells him that she hasn't got money even for the train ticket, Zorg allows her to stay - and they embark on an intensely passionate relationship. Betty's short temper made sure that Zorg didn't hold his job for long, and they end up with Betty's best friend Lisa, as paying guests. Betty wants Zorg to be a successful writer - she had read his only manuscript that was hidden away and forgotten. She now believes it's the best novel she'd ever read and takes it upon herself to get the book published. But Betty is unable to accept rejection by publishers, and nearly ends up in prison for assaulting one of them who poked fun at it. While working at their friend's piano store, Betty is overwhelmed with joy after discovering she could be pregnant. But when further tests prove it to be negative, Betty goes into a state of shock and starts rejecting the world and eventually even herself. Zorg, who loves her deeply, gives his all to help cure her worsening mental illness. The pain he feels for her also helps him to start writing again.

This is a director's film, beautifully scripted, as we watch and feel the couple's growing love. The photography and soundtrack are excellent, as are the heart-felt performances by the main actors. While the film is famous for its nude scenes, there is a great story behind it, one you wouldn't mind watching again once in a while. Highly Recommended Viewing..!

I've had the director's edition DVD for some time now, and noticed the film was also released on Blu-ray more recently, but it is the general/theatrical version. To truly appreciate the film, I recommend the director's cut, which runs for nearly three hours - an hour longer than the theatrical version. The abridged version can be confusing and perhaps even incoherent in places.

For this post, I've cut all the relevant scenes available in blu-ray, but also dug out my DVD for some scenes either removed, or cut-short in the theatrical release, and put them here for the record.

Compilation 1: Béatrice Dalle
These are the early scenes set in the beach cabin when Betty initially moves in with Zorg. Betty's rebellious character couldn't have been cast better - Beatrice Dalle who plays Betty appears to have been born for that part. Mme. Dalle may draw the wrong headlines in the media for her attitude, but she will forever be remembered as Betty. From Blu-ray.

Béatrice Dalle in 37°2 le Matin

Scene Guide:
  • No nudity but sexy - Betty arrives at Zorg's cabin wearing an apron for a dress. making herself at home right away.
  • This long love scene is so authentic, they could even be doing it for real.
  • Zorg's totally uncool employer feasting on Betty, sleeping in Zorg's arms at the cabin.
  • This is a classic. Betty comes outside after overhearing the boss having a go at Zorg for turning up late for work She argues with the guy during which he lifts her shirt to point out she isn't wearing any panties. A furious Betty gives him a piece of her mind (and an eyeful of her pussy in broad daylight, and public view).

Compilation 2: Béatrice Dalle and Clémentine Célarié
All the scenes below happen after Betty and Zorg flee the tacky beach front after setting fire to their cabin. From Blu-ray.

Béatrice Dalle and Clémentine Célarié in 37°2 le Matin

Scene Guide:
  • Betty and Zorg go upstairs 'for a cuddle' in appreciation for her efforts in getting him a publisher.
  • They've just moved into the house once occupied by their friend's mother who had passed on. This is a comic scene where Betty isn't happy sleeping in the same bed where their friend's mother died.
  • Annie is wife of the grocery store owner next door, Zorg enters the kitchen where she's breastfeeding the baby. When he comments innocently that the little one is going for 'it', Annie tells him that her nipples have now become very hard too because of the breastfeeding and asks him to feel it for himself! The ever-horny Annie is played by the very wholesome Clémentine Célarié.
  • Annie takes Zorg forcefully at the shop floor when her hubby isn't watching. This is the most erotic scene in the film where Zorg tries hard to be a gentleman, only to find his hands are all over the place, for someone supposedly rejecting Annie's advances. The poor lady is frustrated she hasn't been getting much from her husband of late, and fears he'd lost interest in her. In the scene you may also catch a glance of Mme Célarié's pubic hair peeping from the top of her thong.
  • Betty stops Zorg, who's in a hurry, to announce she could be pregnant. A longer version of this scene is in the director's edition below.
  • Zorg and Betty love scene.
  • While making love Zorg discovers some sleeping pills and questions her. She tells him he doesn't take them often. A longer version of this is in the director's edition below.
  • Zorg is shocked to see what Betty had done to herself - she was informed that evening that her pregnancy was negative - a touching scene where Zorg reaches out to her.
  • No nudity - see-through white t-shirt. Betty's friend Lisa urges her to take a dip in the lake, and Betty does so by literally falling into it.
  • Zorg comforts a sleepless and depressed Betty.

Compilation 3: From the Director's Cut DVD
Some additional and extended scenes from the director's edition of "37°2 le Matin".

Béatrice Dalle uncut scenes from 37°2 le Matin

Scene Guide:
  • Betty kissing her 'sleepy little slug' goodnight.
  • In the shower, Betty is worried if she's putting on weight.
  • In bed with Zorg after a few drinks.
  • Brief shower scene
  • Extended version of a scene in compilation 2.
  • Extended version of the scene where Betty informs Zorg that she could be pregnant.


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