Dans Paris

Movies Reviews Christophe Honoré
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Dans Paris

Release Date: March 11
Director/Writer: Christophe Honoré
Cinematographer: Jean-Louis Vialard
Starring: Romain Duris, Louis Garrel, Joana Preiss, Guy Marchand
Studio/Run Time: IFC First Take, 92 mins.

Although the French New Wave that began in the late ’50s has been a major in?uence on ?lmmakers around the world, it’s often been an uncomfortable legacy for present-day French ?lmmakers trying to make their own marks.

“I hate the New Wave,” Amélie director Jean-Pierre Jeunet once joked. But Christophe Honoré doesn’t hate the New Wave, and in Dans Paris he celebrates it with more pluck and aplomb than any ?lm in recent memory. On paper it shouldn’t work. The shifts in tone should be too jarring. One brother is in a deep, suicidal depression and the other hops jovially from girl to girl, mugging for the camera and posing just-so in front of, say, a Gus Van Sant movie poster. Meanwhile, it’s Christmas, and the piano tinkling on the soundtrack recalls Vince Guaraldi’s music for Charlie Brown. It shouldn’t work, but it does—as a vibrant, modern re-imagining of the New Wave aesthetic, at once mopey, sweet, playful and madly in love with Americana and cinema itself.