Lou! is filled to the brim with whimsy, quirky characters and comical mishaps, as the the audience is taken on an adventure through Lou’s entertaining and highly animated life. The titular character (Lola Lasseron), is a creative, witty blonde with a penchant for flea markets and hoarding brightly-coloured pieces of “old stuff”. Her mother Emma (Ludivine Sagnier) is a melancholic, floaty former wild-child, now doing her best to support herself, her daughter and her retro video-game obsession, all the while wearing cartoonishly large glasses. Other characters, including Mina and her highly-strung mother, Tristan, the object of Lou’s stalker-like affections, and Lou’s grey cat all help to bring this kooky world to life.
Based on Julien Neel’s popular comic and animated television series, both known as Lou! Journal Infime, this French live-action film tries to take the funny, cartoon-like dream world and bring it to the big screen. Although Neel makes a very good attempt to transfer the story into a new medium, there are times when things do seem to be a little too ridiculous. This is not a film to have playing in the background; time and imagination must be fully invested by the viewer in this sugar-coated reality.
There are certainly moments where one might wonder whether they are, in fact, watching an Amelie spin-off, but this could easily be due to the indie cinematic style used in Lou!, Amelie and many other French films. Overall, this a delightful movie, full of colourful, funny moments. Unfortunately, it does quickly lose steam, and struggles to maintain the audience’s attention, becoming increasingly more gimmicky as the story progresses.
Amaliah Sara Marmon-Halm
Lou! was released nationwide on 13th March 2015.
Watch the trailer for Lou! here: