2 Days in Paris – dir.Julie Delpy, 2007

Though this film will inevitably draw comparisons to Before Sunset, same girl, same city, it’s an original in its own right.  The film zings along endearingly, largely due to its own self-conscious parodying of a light French farce.  French lady, Marion (Julie Delpy), and her American boyfriend Jack (Adam Goldberg), have come to Paris for two nights, where they are to stay in Marion’s flat, on the floor above her enfants terribles type parents.  Jack is a little uptight, he’s a New Yorker don’t you know, so whilst he preoccupies himself with the pitfalls of hypochondria, Marion takes off her spectacles and explores the possibility of romantically moving on from this quirky foreigner who has come along, seemingly  to just humiliate and isolate himself from the footloose Parisians at every available opportunity.  Jack gets threatened when Marion’s exes crop up out of flower stalls from nowhere, he gets a little paranoid when he interprets some questionable French text messages that he sneakily reads on her phone. ‘Paris is hell!’ Jack declares as they break up on the banks of the Seine. A quip to Sartre perhaps, or as it transpires later, he just stayed up watching ‘M’ all night. The strengths of this film are most definitely in the credulity of the relationship that we witness unravel.  Jack is a tattooed totem of neurosis who finds himself out of depth with the laissez faire wooziness of Marion’s family, friends and exes.  Marion, who we are primarily to believe is  cooler and calmer than her boyfriend, her self offers a glimpse of amusing hypochondria.  Convincing herself at a party, that she has had an allergic reaction to some muscles. But perhaps her anxieties run even deeper than that, she is afraid, she tells Jack, of being with just one person for the rest of her life. He accuses her of being a squirrel, collecting men like nuts to have for winter. This film is at its weakest and most disjointed with scenes that seem inserted to politically punctuate the plot, such as Jack sending a group of Bush voting American rednecks the wrong way round Paris.  The film’s successes lies mostly with the fluidity and likability of the performances.  In particular Goldberg’s, whose stand out is the metro scene, where he comically attempts to ward off a strange little man, by casting stern animated faces at him, well at least it made him forget about the threat of terrorism for a while, George Bush, his sinuses, his headaches…

★★★★☆ 

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2 responses to “2 Days in Paris – dir.Julie Delpy, 2007

  1. I really liked this film. It took Delpy years to make mainly because no one wanted to finance a first time female director with a story that wasn’t out of a comic book. Good for her -she did it.

    • i totally agree with you. Im hopefully going to write some more articles comparing woman in film and woman being filmed. Read my wanda review if you’d like, its another female director. I think there’s still a lot to be said about the dichotomies between the male and female gaze.
      r

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