Saturday, March 08, 2008

FILM | Cédric Klapisch's Paris


Writer-Director Cédric Klapisch came to my attention with his film, The Spanish Apartment, which is a charming look at the lives of a group of international exchange students sharing an apartment in Barcelona. It was an exuberant comedy, one that celebrates youth and all its possibilities -- where everything is forgivable and you have to try everything at least once, because here and now you are young. The film was so successful that he later made a sequel, The Russian Dolls, with the same characters -- now in their thirties and having to deal with adult responsibilites that they are not prepared for. I saw Russian Dolls as part of my 30th birthday celebration, because it sounded so much like the story of my life: at that numerically significant age half-way between unbridled youth (my 20s and everything before that) and retirement (I'm guessing I'll retire around 60).

He is also responsible for discovering actor Romain Duris, the male lead in both Spanish Apartment and Russian Dolls, and who was also last seen in the The Beat That My Heart Skipped. Duris will star in Klapisch's new film, Paris. The picture was recently released in France and Belgium, and it also stars the delectable Juliette Binoche.

All this, while I was googling for Judith Thurman.

The narrative of Paris centers around the ailing Pierre (a gaunt Romain Duris) whose sister Elise (Juliette Binoche) moves to his flat with her kids while her brother waits for an available heart for transplant. It explores the lives of various Parisians, and offers much picturesque shots of the French city. Everything points to a pleasing, heart-warming film that make you wish you are in Paris right now, living the beautiful, romantic lives of these people. This is the power of the French: they are probably just as unhappy as everyone else, but they still manage to make us believe their quality of lives are better than our own.

I found the trailer for Paris, but I need help -- there's no subtitles and I don't understand French.

It looks good, doesn't it?

3 comments:

Nymeth said...

I don't understand French either, but it really does look good.

Dark Orpheus said...

Nymeth It feels like a French version of "Love Actually" doesn't it? :)

Rebecca Safarik said...

You cannot be serious, love actually? No way! I saw this movie 5 days ago and it was absolutely brilliant! Intelligent, deep, tres francais with good dialogues...beautiful scenes, excellent music, very smart sense of humour. Romantic, but not like american movies. it´s a film about paris, about fear, about dissapointments, about hard-living, about joy, about life. It´s the best film i´ve seen lately...very recommended.