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Midnight in Paris

Midnight in Paris

 

A romantic comedy about a family traveling to the French capital for business. The party includes a young engaged couple forced to confront the illusion that a life different from their own is better.

 

Director: Woody Allen

Writer: Woody Allen

 

Staring: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams and Kathy Bates

 

 

 

Léa Seydoux

Léa Seydoux

Owen Wilson

Owen Wilson

Kurt Fuller Mimi Kennedy

Kurt Fuller Mimi Kennedy

Woody Allen

Woody Allen

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 Reviews for “Midnight in Paris”

  1. “Midnight in Paris” Self Indulgent and Anti-Conservative
    Director Woody Allen is responsible for some of the most interesting and some of the worst feature films made in the last four decades. His latest work doesn’t fit into either category. It actually fits somewhere in the middle of his oeuvre. Comparatively, it is similar in tone to his 1985, “The Purple Rose of Cairo.” That is all I want to say about that as I do not want to give away the big spoiler, albeit that it will be hard to review this film without giving it away.
    Owen Wilson portrays Gil Pender, a Hollywood screenwriter on holiday in Paris with his fiancée, Inez (Rachel McAdams) and her parents. Gil is on vacation from being a Hollywood Hack and in the process of writing his “Great American Novel;” the theme of which is being enamored of the past. You can tell from the beginning that he is not happy with either his life or his fiancé and wishes to be part of a better generation and era.
    Inez, the direct opposite of Gil, is a materialistic ambitious character who is pretty much unlikable from the beginning. Her mother is such a bitch that you cannot help but expect the same of her. Her father is portrayed as a right-wing Tea bagger who is constantly getting into arguments with the liberal Gil, mostly over politics. There is never a point in the film when you feel the slightest sympathy for anyone in Inez’s family. You just simply know that Inez will do something during the course of the film that will allow Gil to get out of the engagement and relationship.
    There is not much more I can say without giving the major plot twist in the film away. However, I will say that the majority of the jokes and dialogue require the viewer to have a strong background in the material. Anything short of that will leave the viewer perplexed and completely out of touch with the plot. In fact, when I saw the film, there were many jokes where only about five people in the audience were laughing hysterically. The remainder of the sold out crowd just didn’t get it.
    This is where the elitism and self-indulgent nature of Woody Allen shines. If you are not part of the inside joke and well aware of the literary and artistic references throughout, you will be lost. And, this, unfortunately, will be what kills this film commercially. It will play very well in intellectual centers and areas where elitism shines. But, the mass general public throughout the world will almost definitely never see it. In fact, I was mentioning this film to one of my Thai friends this morning and we were both sure that it will never see the light of day there.
    As is always the case in Woody Allen films, the acting is outstanding. Although, in my opinion, Owen Wilson tries a little too hard to play the nebbish character that Woody Allen himself has portrayed in all of his movies prior to the turn of the Century.
    The Paris locales shine under the cinematography of Darius Khondji. The use of rain and earth tones gives this film the feel needed to transport the viewer to another world. The Costume and Set Design is also outstanding.
    I give the film three stars out of five.

    • S. Mandell says:

      The puzzling thing about the film was its anti-republican bias. For some reason known only to Allen, the girl as well as her mother and father are identified as conservative republicans. Not only is this fact incidental to the plot of the movie, but it is also absolutely unnecessary. Allen would have us believe that only republicans are materialistic–simplistic and false–but also that artists and writers are mostly liberal–exceptions such as T. S. Eliot and David Mamet come readily to mind. Allen would have done better had he let the characters tell their stories, without his childish and ultimately movie destroying political commentary. I, for one, felt sandbagged by Allen’s characterizations of Inez’s family.

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