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Lillian Likes..."Toujours Belle"

Lillian Likes… “Toujours Belle”

**This review may contain spoilers**

“Toujours Belle” is a short film written by Christopher Siaens, which translates to “Always Beautiful.” This film is a very short film, with the time clocking in at about 4 and a half minutes. This was surprisingly the right amount of time to tell the simple but sweet story of a goth girl who tries her best to win the affections of an academic girl she notices pass by everyday on her way home from school.

The film opens on some trees from the point of view of someone walking below, which we find is a girl dressed in full gothic clothing and makeup.

Lillian Likes…The movement of the camera, as it pans along from the vantage point of the gothic girl happily walking along.

Lillian Likes…The lighthearted, hopeful music which is an interesting contrast to the darker aesthetic of the gothic girl.

Lillian Likes…The cute exchange between the gothic girl and the academic girl who she is preening for. The gothic girl accidentally smears her black lipstick as she applies it because she is distracted by the object of her affections walking by. This was an interesting take with the lipstick smear being black goth lipstick rather than the typical red lipstick smear.

Lillian Likes…The contrast between the persona of the goth girl, who had the dark aesthetic going on with clothes, hair and makeup, with her bubbly and cute persona.

Lillian Likes…The interesting shot of the gothic girl from the vantage point of outside of the glass door, pacing frantically inside her house.

Lillian Likes…The way the writer portrayed the gothic girl transforming her gothic appearance into something more “normal” and wholesome to get the attention and hopefully impress the non-gothic studious girl who she watches from afar.

As the gothic girl waits anxiously for the studious girl to come her way, she notices that the studious girl seems to be more interested a female friend that she walks with, which causes the gothic girl to retreat back into her house.

The timeline jumps ahead and the gothic girl, now dressed like her old self, looks glum and less perky than earlier on. The studious girl, now transformed into a gothic look, comes out from behind a tree and joins the gothic girl. The two girls walk together, which we ca assume ends happily ever after for the two girls.

Lillian Likes…The way that the writer and director effectively conveyed the story in an absence of dialogue. This was a sweet little story that was just as effective packaged in an uber short film without dialogue. The film’s message didn’t need it.

Christopher Siaens is a prolific screenwriter and producer in the midwestern independent film industry. The content of his works focuses heavily on mental health and women’s abuse issues.

Lillian Likes… “Toujours Belle”

Story by Christopher Siaens

Screenplay by Orin Phillips

Directed by Aaryn Osborne

Cinematography by Ryan Rheims

Edited by Emory Corbin

Starring Kat Gore, Rena MacMonegle, and Abbagail Neeley


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