Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Midnight in Paris

I finally saw this charming movie over the weekend at the Revue. I am happy to see that Woody has returned to his stellar form - I haven't enjoyed a film of his really since Hannah and her sisters. Great cast too - with Owen Wilson embodying Gil - the sweet but tortured would be novelist who wants more than anything to experience Paris in the 20's - the Jazz Age - hobnobbing with the like of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Hemingway - his idol - played by a dishy newcomer (at least to me) Corey Stoll. Listening to Cole Porter try out "Let's Do It" on piano at a party..exhilarating. He also gets his novel read by Gertrude Stein - wonderfully portrayed by Kathy Bates - who picks up the latest Picasso for a mere $500.

Of course, this being Paris - there is l'amour in the form of Adriana - artists muse to the likes of Picasso and Modigliani - played by the divine Marion Cotilliard. A dilemma for Gil - stay and marry whiny and self centred Ines - played by Rachel McAdams or remain in a bygone era.

Adrien Brody is a delightful Dali or DA-LI! as he introduces himself and suffice to say time travelling Gil doesn't faze the existentialists at all...Man Ray and Bunuel included. Highly recommended - a beautiful billet doux to that enchanting city. A good reason for me to visit - sadly, I have never been!

It got me thinking about time travel..where would you choose to go in time? One period I would love to check out would be the heyday of bebop in New York - maybe late 40s early 50's - listening to soon to be legends like Miles and Dizzy and Bird, Lady Day...and on and on. I think there would be a vibrancy to that post war era as well. Some periods would be fascinating to get a peek at and then escape quickly like ancient Egypt, any period of English history - particularly Tudor and Medieval - provided one didn't get dropped into a war or execution.To meet Shakespeare or Elizabeth I or Keats, Shelley, Byron, Jane Austen, Charles Dickens. I think the golden age of Hollywood would be fun too. Also, many places before they had been colonized...lush, unspoiled oases.

I had the pleasure of watching "John Adams" recently - six hours of Paul Giamatti - who I adore - not to mention what a talented actor and chameleon he is - you should check it out if you hadn't already - fascinating history of the American Revolution. Laura Linney is marvelous as his devoted wife Abigail and Tom Wilkinson a treat as the genius and eccentric Benjamin Franklin. Our own Sara Polley plays their adult daughter Nellie.
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