Out Now On-Demand
Cedric Klapisch, whose When the Cat's Away and The Spanish Apartment delighted in the bonds of tight community, here extends his attention to all of Paris. This multi-character cavalcade of life and death and love and the lack of it in the City of Lights almost seems intended to leave audiences wanting more. Romain Duris plays a cabaret dancer awaiting heart surgery. Juliette Binoche is his social-worker sister who moves in to help. Local stallholders are among the many whose lives intersect with hers. Carpe diem is the message and Fabrice Luchini plays a jaded history professor who does just that with a beautiful young student.
- Cedric Klapisch('The Russian Dolls', 'The Spanish Apartment', 'When The Cat's Away')
Comedy, Drama, Romance
Rating: M offensive language
French and English, with English subtitles
It starts with a stunning view from the Eiffel Tower (naturellement), ends with a cab ride through the streets, and in between it hops sure-footedly between themes of love, death, family and identity without ever becoming messy.
As with the forthcoming Flight Of The Red Balloon (also Paris-based and starring Binoche), the city itself becomes a character - by the time the credits roll you'll be aching to book a European vacation. But Paris (the film) is much bigger in scope than the tightly-focussed Balloon... and while never straying into stylised Amelie territory, it paints its pictures in brighter hues.
The ensemble cast is terrific too - Binoche at her most dusky and sweet, Romain Duris playing her sick brother without ever straying into melodrama, Fabrice Luchini almost stealing the show as a middle aged history professor sending saucy text messages to a student. Every character is as textured and real as the bustling boulevards and sumptuous skylines behind them - and every little story within the story goes deep.
More than a snapshot of city life, Paris is a three-dimensional soul-searching experience to make you laugh, cry and start saving for that holiday. C'est bon. C'est trés, trés bon.
Lumiere Reader [Wellington]
Urban Cinefile [Australia]