Midnight in ParisDirector: Woody Allen Writer: Woody Allen Stars:Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams and Kathy Bates
I saw this film one week ago today, in Richmond, VA, and perhaps the best way to describe Midnight in Paris is to say that I haven't been able to quit thinking about it since.
I'm a confessed Woody Allen-phile (to coin a term), but his recent efforts have certainly been mixed. Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Match Point stand up to anyone's best work, but while I enjoyed films such as Scoop, Melinda and Melinda, and Whatever Works, no one is comparing any of those to Annie Hall.
I won't compare Midnight in Paris to Annie Hall, because that's not fair -- Annie Hall is the best romantic comedy that has ever been made -- but Allen's latest is a brilliant film in its own right. Owen Wilson stars and, while I may have made a different casting choice here, he is better than you would expect as the hack screenwriter who dreams of literary success and becomes intoxicated by Paris. Rachel McAdams is lovely, as always, as Wilson's fiance, and Marion Cotillard is perfect as...well, she plays Adriana, and I won't reveal too much about her character.
The most memorable performances are by Alison Pill, as Zelda Fitzgerald, and Corey Stoll, as Ernest Hemingway. That should give you an idea of the direction this movie takes, and it absolutely works. It's a reflection upon nostalgia versus living for the present. That certainly isn't a unique theme, but Allen has put together one of the best films I've seen in a while. It's proof that Woody Allen remains capable of moving work.
Five stars out of five. Must see.