2 Days in Paris

Le Week-End Movie

Roger Michell’s Le Week-End is a far darker and less conventional film than its twee, Notting Hill name-dropping advertisements suggest. Its depiction of a bickering older couple stuck together on a perfunctory second honeymoon is hardly another indie grab for the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel crowd to once again sightsee vicariously through British screen veterans. Rather, the couple’s failure to connect is presented as an existential crisis borne by their inability to overcome one another’s revisited insecurities and tics. Their disconnection is a reluctantly accepted marker of dwindling self worth in the face of a life run embarrassingly short of its rich potential. Jim Broadbent‘s Nick at one point dances alone to Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone” around the lavish Parisian suite he can’t afford, earbud cords bopping atop his undershirt while he sips on minibar whiskey. Abruptly, he stops. A former ‘60s radical, Nick has seen his dreams of revolution give way to practical compromise (including, apparently, marriage itself), professional disappointment, and aging out of hipness, until the very sounds of social change fit neatly into a library of songs for a portable Apple product. Le Week-End never fully paints a scope of the couple’s past, but instead lets their history emerge as infectious burdens upon the present. A glut of other indies have similarly tackled the topic of longterm relationship difficulties, offering depictions of complex couplehoods that serve as a corrective Hollywood’s convention of seeing marriage as love’s definitive triumph over conflict. While many of these “relationshit movies,” […]

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2 Days in New York

Editor’s note: With 2 Days in New York opening in limited release this Friday, here is a re-run of our review from Sundance, when it was the only film that could perk an exhausted Kate up on Festival Day 26. This review was originally posted on January 29, 2012. Picking up a few years where her 2 Days in Paris left off, Julie Delpy‘s 2 Days in New York has moved the sometimes-messy life of Marion (Delpy) to Gotham. Marion has now taken up with Mingus (Chris Rock, playing a pitch-perfect straight man), a former co-worker who offered dry humor and personal understanding when her previous relationship crumbled. The pair live together in a cozy and artistic apartment, joined by Marion’s young son Lulu (Owen Shipman) and Mingus’ daughter Willow (Talen Ruth Riley). As calm and lovely as their life together seems, everything is about to be tested over a brief two-day period, marked by the arrival of Marion’s insane family, the opening of an important gallery exhibition of Marion’s photos, and the unspoken pressure that one of Marion’s other artistic endeavors is putting her under.

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2 Days in New York

While she’s best known as an actress (Before Sunrise, represent!), Julie Delpy has, in recent years, been making the transition to becoming a writer/director as well. Probably her best known work so far is her 2007 relationship comedy Two Days in Paris, which was kind of a comedy of manners where Delpy’s character and her boyfriend (Adam Goldberg) went to Paris to visit her crazy family and have some uncomfortable run-ins with her ex-boyfriends. 2 Days in New York seems to be a sequel in the classic sense. It tells basically the exact same story, except in reverse. This time the crazy family and the awkward ex-boyfriend are coming to New York to visit her and her new boyfriend (Chris Rock). It’s kind of like how Linda Kozlowski was first shocked by Crocodile Dundee’s Outback home and then Crocodile Dundee was shocked by her New York home. Kind of.

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The movie, not an actual trip. We aren’t that rich. It also has nothing to do with Paris Hilton…

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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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