December 31, 2013.

This blog is now closed. After three years and 311 posts, I have decided to end this blog. I have enjoyed watching the films, reviewing them, and interacting with global readers.

If you are interested in contacting me, you can do so by commenting on any of the posts. The blog will remain live on the web.
Thank you to all the readers for your comments, ideas, and thoughts. They were helpful, stimulating, and enriching. This is Alene, signing off.

June 15, 2012

Midnight in Paris (2011)


When it’s over, Writer/Director Woody Allen has once again captured the essence of his characters through the most common and peculiar situations.  This was such a feel good film thanks to great storytelling and a talented cast.  In Midnight in Paris, a successful screenwriter, Gil (Owen Wilson), finds inspiration for his first novel by wandering the streets of Paris.  Gil soon discovers that his time traveling midnight strolls make him re-evaluate his life and his upcoming marriage to Inez (Rachel McAdams).  Told with nostalgic charm, the story paints a romantic portrait about desires and fantasies most people can relate to.  Getting the opportunity to go back in time to visit a person you admire or a place that holds special meaning can be an enticing adventure hardly anyone can refuse.  I think that's the appeal of this film.  It's time travel, but it doesn't feel like science fiction.  It's sweet, yet dramatic.  I think Wilson does a good balancing act playing the likable Gil, who is at a crossroads in the present, and Gil, who is tempted to live in the past with the woman (Marion Cotillard) he is falling in love with.  Gil's desire to live in the past is a metaphor for his denial to deal with the problems in the present, and Allen does such a wonderful job blending the seriousness and humor that comes out of his relationships and desires.  One fun thing I noticed in the film - there wasn't a cellphone in any of the scenes!  Wow, can that be possible for a film made in 2011?  If I'm wrong, let me know.

My rating: 3.5 out of 5

1 comment:

  1. I've already mentioned before and I'll mention it again, I loooove this film!Everything about it, except the character Inez. One would think why they got together in the first place. She puts him down all the time and why Gil tolerates it I don't get at all.
    The film is so magical! I can't say how many times I've daydreamed about meeting a famous dead person. It's just so funny that everyone I've ever wanted to meet, Gil meets in his time travel. The scene in which Dali and Luis Bunuel show up really makes the story more interesting for me because I highly admire their works. Then there's Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein and even Degas and Lautrec, wow! It's a plethora of famous dead artists and writers. The message is clear that we tend to romanticise the past especially when we are trying to escape our present lives. I like Gil's line about dreaming of going to the dentist and realizing there's no novocaine or antibiotics in the olden times. It may be nice to just imagine living in the past but reality catches up when we live in any time period long enough.

    Still, it would have been nice to talk to Bunuel and Dali.
    I also love the beginning of the film showing all the touristy parts of Paris from morning til night time. It's just so beautiful. You can't help but feel a little bit nostalgic seeing those vignettes. Even if Paris isn't your hometown.