Midnight in Paris
Midnight In Paris [Unavoidable Spoilers]: Woody Allen brings us more misunderstood middle-class artisan-intellectuals with relationship trouble. The idea of the central MacGuffin of this film (travelling back in time and meeting historical figures) didn’t bother me much; but as someone who’s not very literary literate it all got a bit wanky pouring familiar name after familiar name on to the screen as if the audience would lap up the theatricality of it all. The only character I liked from the entire cast was Adrien ”Rhinoceros!!” Brody, everyone else just played pretty grotesque caricatures. Owen Wilson’s does his schlubby moping vagina act again, would love to see him try something different. As with any Allen film, there’s some nice tourism-friendly photography and vision from behind the camera, and a token trampy ragtime soundtrack to tart up the audio. For me, it’s just another stock Allen film – watchable and mildly entertaining – unless you majored in English, then it will undoubtedly be your film of the year.
This actually scores high above Allen’s recent output as a bit of nostalgia and also a cautionary tale on the dangers and general uselessness of nostalgia. It’s also a great dialogue on the nature of passion versus cold intellectualism, in which Gil’s pure enthusiasm for the artists portrayed allows him to experience their works in a way that Paul cannot through the observations of others which he has cultivated.
Surprised about your take on Wilson; I thought he served as a great Allen surrogate.
For me the past ten Allen films I’ve seen just merge in to one large, boring, not-very-memorable mashup. As for Wilson, it’s probably his shocking lack of range that bugs me the most