Wow…I have not seen a film that charmed me so much perhaps since the first time I saw Love Actually. And I must say, I loved this one more. Maybe because it was an English major’s fantasy, and maybe because it was so lightheartedly existential, but I truly adored it. I am talking about Midnight in Paris and if you haven’t seen it, you better rent it soon because it is a delight.
The story features some of my favorite actors — Rachel McAdams, Owen Wilson, Kathy Bates, and a new favorite, Marion Cotillard. It is just delightful and tells the story of an engaged couple (McAdams and Wilson) visiting Paris while Wilson’s character (Gil Pender) works on a book. McAdams (Inez) is the ever-spoiled, shallow shrew of a woman whose judgmental and sardonic parents complete her ever-insulting thoughts.
Gil Pender is fun-loving, the ultimate example of a disheveled, scattered artist, and a perfect Woody Allen personification. (Allen directed the film) And each night at midnight, Gil is mysteriously and miraculously transported to the era of his beloved idols — Hemingway, Stein, Fitzgerald, Picasso…and on. It is as magical as it is mysterious and absolutely captivating.
As a lover of literature, the very thought is tantalizing and Allen directed it in such a way that it fulfills that desperate itch we can never scratch of imagining what it must have been like to live among such greats.
The film has its twists and turns, of course, moments of witty snippets littered throughout. But it also has a moment of epiphany — of recognizing that the present is never the “golden age” that you think a prior era must have been. Which jolts us back into our present worlds — the lives we live outside of enjoying a film such as this — with the reminder that sometimes the present is not all that bad…
Please go see this movie! It is a winner!