Lola ★★★★½

Lola, Jacques Demy's first feature, is brilliant. It is at once sweetly romantic and emotionally devastating. Some characters' stories end with the almost absurdly joyful happiness of a Hollywood musical, others are alone and defeated. This mix of reality and fantasy makes Lola extraordinarily affecting — its final moments left me close to tears. Demy shoots Lola with such beauty and skill... it's kind of ridiculous to think this is his feature debut. This also features the most perfectly placed and executed slow-motion footage I've seen in some time. There are few debut efforts as good as this.