I personally really enjoyed this anthology film that broadcasted the talents of multiple directors, actors and artists all in relation to their love for Paris. It was sweet, charming, hilarious and so much more. A truly heartwarming experience, all 18 shorts that are presented in this anthology each shine in their own right and respectfully so.
One of the shorts that I enjoyed in particular was entitled “Tuileries” written by the Coen brothers and starring Steve Buscemi who I am a fan of. The way the film played with the emotion of love and how it humored the audience with over-the-top acting as a jealous boyfriend is enraged over the simple eye-contact that the character of Buscemi makes with his girlfriend is hilarious. The color tone and contrast of yellow and orange gave off a very warm atmosphere and was all the more enlightening and welcoming to the audience.
Another of the films that stood out to me was “Faubourg Saint-Denis” starring the gorgeous Natalie Portman. The way it told the story of a blind man’s relationship with a young aspiring actress and how he accidentally misinterprets her words as cause for a break-up between them, the way in which he suddenly reflects upon their time spent together whilst never mentioning anything to do with sight really made me realize the importance of those things that one can take for granted in a relationship.
However, one short in particular that I wasn’t fond of was “Tour Eiffel” about the story of two mimes falling in love. Everything was actually fine for me whilst viewing the short, up until the mimes began to use their feet as vehicles and move quickly about the town. This sat very awkwardly with me as everything else in the film was realistic except for that aspect. It was just simply too weird and felt misplaced, it never sat right with me throughout the entire short and made me feel uneasy.
The short “Parc Monceau” that starred Nick Nolte was excellent in playing with the minds of the audience. Filmed in one continuous shot, the short leads one to believe that Nolte is an elderly man seeking the heart of a younger woman whilst encouraging her to leave her current man, Gaspard. By the films end, we learn that he is in fact the father of the young woman and Gaspard her son. The twist is so effortlessly revealed through the camera’s subtle change in angle, from a trailing shot of the two characters talking along the sidewalk to it slowly panning as they walk past the camera, marking the turning point and twist in the film’s plot. Charming and sweet, this was one of my favorites in the anthology.
Lastly, the short entitled “Quartier de la Madeleine” that revolves around a young tourist falling in love with a vampire was captivating for obvious reasons, it had a vampire in it. It’s use of color (Black, white, blue and red) was very artistic and stood out amongst the rest of the films for that reason alone. While it’s ending unforgettable as the two fall in love and resort to sucking on each other’s necks instilled both a sense of wrongness and humor, it was yet another brilliant piece of work.
Ultimately, Paris Je T’aime was a great way to end the class, after following the heavy dosage of drama and violence in The Godfather Parts I and II, this anthology film was perfect in lightening the mood and ending the class on a very happy, joyous and humorous note. Overall, I have truly come to appreciate film from a whole other level, and now understand the importance of having an open mind and thinking out-of-the-box when viewing movies and films alike.