Christophe Honoré shot Dans Paris on the fly in 31 days, and it feels like it. That’s not meant as an insult: The movie’s fanciful energy—like its do-anything-for-love characters—is such that you never know what’s coming next. On a whim, characters directly address the audience or talk to each other through musical numbers; even if they fall flat half the time, these devices never feel contrived because Honoré‘s rambunctious filmmaking process is born truly in the moment. Paul (Romain Duris) returns to his dad’s Paris apartment after a miserable breakup, and in flashback, the audience glimpses life with his girlfriend Anna (Joana Preiss) in the French country, where the two play a cruel game of one-upmanship. Dans Paris evokes the sexy but dangerous collision of egos: Paul rubs Anna’s face against his crotch, demanding, “Is that what you want?” and later stuffs pills in his mouth and takes a photo to document his pain. Only after revisiting his father’s tortured relationship to his mother does Paul start to understand the sacrifice that real love requires, and Dans Paris begins to fill with the bittersweet aftertaste of a bad relationship: Paul self-destructs with grief, and after a late-night dive into the Sienne, he is reborn. As reckless as love itself, the movie has its ups and downs, but you can’t help but be touched by it.
- IFC Films
- 92 min
- Christophe Honoré
- Christophe Honoré
- Romain Duris, Louis Garrel, Guy Marchand, Joana Preiss, Alice Butaud, Marie-France Pisier, Helena Noguerra, Judith El Zein, Annabelle Hettmann, Mathieu Funck-Brentano, Lou Rambert Preiss
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