The Double Life of Véronique

The Double Life of Véronique ★★★★½

Véronique: Is that me?
Alexandre Fabbri: Of course it's you.
Véronique: Why two?
Alexandre Fabbri: Because during performances I handle them a lot. They damage easily.

Just as I suspected, Krzysztof Kieślowski left me stunned and confused with his work La double vie de Véronique. I'm still not entirely sure if I got the point of this film, but there's some aspects that can be pointed out.

It's hard to say what I felt during my viewing, what emotions invaded me while I was watching both the lives of Weronika and Véronique (Irène Jacob). I was puzzled, like that feeling when you think you're not alone, or when you do think you're alone. I wasn't invested in Weronika emotionally during her thirty minutes of presence (which is quite short), yet there was something, like a connection. And how the movie abruptly ends, I felt empty in some way.

Maybe all of this could be explained in the puppeteer's character. We tend sometimes to get this impression of free-will, when in reality something (or someone) was in control all along, just like those puppets. When he points out that Véronique looks just like the girl on the photo (who is Weronika), she falls into despair, confused by the reality that is presented to her. And by the way, their relationship is hard to describe. It feels so creepy, since the guy uses some weird methods to get to her or contact her, yet at times it seems warm, gentle and honest.

Maybe it's too early to give a rating to La double vie de Véronique at this point, since I still feel dazed about what I watched. But at the same time, Kieślowski's touch of reality and surreal is impressive, and for that, I admire it.

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