The Double Life of Véronique

The Double Life of Véronique ★★★½

Dreamy, poetic, visually sublime. The music is heartbreakingly beautiful. The camera adores Irène Jacob.

This film is loaded with evocative imagery. My favourite is when Weronika lays on the bed and the light shining through lace curtains makes patterns on her skin. Then later we see those same lace curtains in Veronique’s room. The orange filter gives an otherworldly mood. It uses a similar palette to A Short Film About Killing, except that the red/green/turquoise is more prominent. I found the complete lack of other colours to get a bit monotonous and obvious after a while and I started wondering if Kieslowski ever shows a blue sky – I’m pretty sure not in the last few films I’ve seen.

I do love this. I hate rating movies! My star rating isn’t relative to any other films except those by Kieslowski – I just didn’t want to give higher because I think No End and Blind Chance, which also have existential/vaguely supernatural themes are significantly better. Or I just got more from them. I would have been gaga about Veronique when I was a teenager - the romance and mystery, the frightening yet intoxicating possibilities of existence and its dimensions were more imaginable, just out of reach but still very much there. All tinged with unbearable longing and pain. It’s hard to explain and I haven’t managed to – it’s elusive and indescribable. I remember it, my girlish attempts to write fiction remind me of it. But my disillusioned, cynical side is more dominant now so I suppose that’s sad.

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