ParisFebruary 20, 2008
Pierre, a professional dancer, suffers from a serious heart disease. While he is waiting for a transplant which may (or may not) save his life…
Release Year: 2008
Rating: 6.8/10 (5,339 voted)
Critic's Score: 68/100
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Romain Duris, Fabrice Luchini
Pierre, a professional dancer, suffers from a serious heart disease. While he is waiting for a transplant which may (or may not) save his life, he has nothing better to do than look at the people around him, from the balcony of his Paris apartment. When Elise, his sister with three kids and no husband, moves in to his place to care for him, Pierre does not change his new habits. And instead of dancing himself, it is Paris and the Parisians who dance before his eyes.
Arthur Delamare – le présentateur télé
Release Date: 20 February 2008
Filming Locations: Basilique du Sacré-Coeur, Montmartre, Paris 18, Paris, France
Opening Weekend: $46,518
(20 September 2009)
(20 December 2009)
When the shop-owner of the bakery sell a baguette she asks for 80 cent, doesn't register it in the till, which has the figures 0,00 than it changes to 0,78 than back to 0,00 again.
Give chance a chance. I believe in you! Your life's not over! Maybe it hasn't even started.
Maybe the Finest movie about Paris since Paris vu Par
No one, but no one, makes movies that better capture a sense of place
than Cedric Klapisch. Since the miraculous little When the Cat's Away
(Chacun Cherche son Chat, 1996) he's consistently been able to evoke a
real sense of lived lives and inhabited city spaces. Wonderful then, to
discover that after all the travels of The Spanish Apartment (2002) and
Russian Dolls (2005) he's returned to Paris to make one of the best
films ever made of those little universes within the City of Light.
That said if you know nothing about France or its history and culture
you just won't get it!
The hook on which this multidimensional movie hangs is Pierre (Klapisch
favorite, Romain Duris), a professional dancer who's justlearned that
his heart is failing. A transplant may save him, maybe not. All this
has echoes of the great Agnes Varda film, Cleo de 5 a 7 (1962), where
Cleo, a young singer played by Corinne Marchand, also gets a
frightening diagnosis and she too, walks the streets of the city facing
her own death. Maybe Paris (the film) achieves even more as a kind of
aubade or farewell to the dance of life that ceaselessly crosses Paris
(the city) in time and in space.
The centre of the film is Pierre's sister Élise (Juliette Binoche in
her most relaxed and charming performance in years). Elise moves in
with Pierre (along with her children!) to help out and her own little
adventures as she shops at the local market opens out the film as we
discover the complex and many layered live of the market workers,
especially glum Jean (Albert Dupontel) and his soon to be ex wife
Caroline (Julie Ferrier).
Another story thread follows terminally bored history professor, Roland
Verneuil (Fabrice Luchini) embarking on a new career as a TV pundit:
these scenes are beautifully satirical yet also curiously touching.
Among the many delights of the movie is a great dream scene where
Roland's brother, architect Philippe Verneuil (François Cluzet) is
plunged into the 3D Universe used to sell off one of his middle class
housing Projects and floats like a tormented Mario Brother from some
gleaming modernist disaster to rapturous potential buyers and back
again. This delicious scene goes on just long bought to make more than
a few silly dreams of home improvement (let alone all those fantastical
TV Reality shows) seem, as they are, utterly absurd , yet also quite
nightmarish in their silly faith in problem solving by buying stuff.
For this alone the movie's worth the price of admission!
Interwoven, too, is the story of the anxious young Benoit in Cameroon,
adrift and about to try to join his Paris based émigré family in that
most dangerous of ways, the open boat from Africa to Europe. All French
life, it seems, is touched upon, not least the political morass facing
governments as they grapple with the problem of the poor and
dispossessed out in the projects. The music track is equally complex,
with that old favorite (since Truffaut used it in Shoot the Piano
Player almost fifty years ago!) Erik Satie's Gymnopedie Number 1 again
weaving its extraordinary spell! You just have to be there!
Klapisch has done something marvelous here, a film full of ideas and
humanity, yet one that somehow enables us to engage with and care for
so many complex characters without ever having to resort to
stereotypes. It's a great achievement and a glorious movie about that
city to which we must all return in our dreams: Paris.