The 50th New York Film Festival is bookmarked by two films in which disasters lead to personal awakenings. The opening movie on September 28 is Ang Lee’s LIFE OF PI, a 3D adventure tale about an Indian boy’s antics with various wildlife after a shipwreck sets them adrift on the ocean. The closing night attraction is Robert Zemeckis’ FLIGHT, about a pilot, played by Denzel Washington, who saves a plane — if not necessarily his life — from crashing.
In “The Review Revue,” we turn dozens of movie reviews from all over the Internet into one handy blog post. It’s like super-concentrated orange juice for film criticism (with less pulp and Vitamin D). This week: we pledge to gauge the critical reaction to THE VOW.
MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, Woody Allen’s latest film starring Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, and Marion Cotillard, opened in the U.S. on Friday May 20th. The film, a romantic comedy set in Paris, is Allen’s forty-first feature film and his sixth film shot in Europe since 2005.
In MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, Gil (played by Owen Wilson) is on vacation in Paris with his fiancée Inez (Rachel McAdams) and her parents. From the outset, their polar opposite views on Paris are apparent: Gil, a successful Hollywood screenwriter, has a romantic view of the city while Inez, more comfortable with her California lifestyle, sees it as just another place in the world. After dinner with Inez’s overbearing friends Paul (Michael Sheen) and Carol (Nina Arianda), Gil calls it a night as they hit a club. Lost and a little drunk, Gil finds himself on a quiet street as the bells strike midnight. When a car pulls up filled with English speaking revelers, Gil is pulled into their party and circumstances that he never could have imagined.
This is Allen’s second film in Paris, the first “Everyone Says I Love You,” included Paris in only a portion of the film, but MIDNIGHT IN PARIS is Allen’s cinematic love note to the city.
From the film’s press kit, “Of course I’m partial to New York because I was born there and grew up there,” he says, “but if I didn’t live in New York, Paris is the place I would live.” This feeling echoes the sentiments of the film’s main character, Gil, who looks back with regret on an opportunity he had to move to Paris twenty years earlier but didn’t take. Allen himself had a similar opportunity during the filming of WHAT’S NEW PUSSYCAT in the 60’s. “It was an adventure that was too bold for me at the time. In retrospect I could have stayed, or at the very minimum taken an apartment and divided my time – but I didn’t and I regret that.”
Allen sat down with reporters to discuss MIDNIGHT IN PARIS at a press conference for the film on May 17th in New York.