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Love at 20 -- Writer's Poke #230

I stumbled across "Antoine and Colette," which is an interesting French short film from the early 1960s. Shot in black and white, it's the story of a young boy infatuated with a hot chick.

Towards the end of the film, he lays it all out for her: Let's set things straight, he tells her. Just don't lead me on.

Of course she hasn't been leading him on whatsoever. She doesn't mind if he hangs around, but if she has something she'd rather be doing, or other people she'd rather be with, she makes it quite clear that he is not the first priority in her life.

As it turns out, her parents are much more "in love" with him than she is. They see in him a nice boy, but that's probably all that Colette sees in him too. And by film's end, her parents have invited him to supper, but then there's a knock on the door and a new man has arrived to take Colette out for a date. Antoine is left to watch TV with the parents. Awkward? Uh, yeah...

The brilliance of this short is in the subtext: class issues, feminist issues, etc. It's also interesting to view the representation of a boy looking for love whereas it's the young woman that's looking more for fun and freedom.

What did romantic love mean to you? Pick a specific age, such as 20, and explore how your ideas about love have evolved over the years.

"You are the most beautiful girl that has ever lived, and it was worth dying to have kissed you." -- Dylan Thomas


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