I’m a sucker for alternate reality stories!
Much of what I write about messes around with reality in one way or the other. And if this mechanic is well-handled and brought into a mainstream medium, all the better! I wish I could remember another one I really liked, but it was years ago and about something as similar, like people passing by in a supermarket, wondering “what-ifs,” or something. Dang it! Anyway, this is about an engaged couple who are tagging along some wealthy-cum-snobby parents on a business trip to Paris. Owen Wilson’s character, Gil, is in love with Paris and doesn’t want to leave…his fiancée, Rachel McAdams’s, Inez, not so much.
Oooh, conflict–the great must-have in all good storytelling!
If you’re at all perceptive, you can see it all coming a mile away, but that’s not the important part for me–what I loved was the whole back-in-time travel, the period and location ambiance, meeting all the Greats du History…Hemingway (“Who wants to fight!“), Gertrude Stein, Dali, the Fitzgeralds. The carrying on of two, parallel lives, and how they interacted with each other, even across time (the diary of Marion Cotillard’s character, Adriana…). I loved the mechanism of travel to the past. There’s so much I want to say about this movie, but I don’t want to give away anything else about it, including the realization Gil has at the end of the movie, obvious or not. It is such an enjoyable film, and always fun to watch Owen Wilson. But I love the “peeking behind the curtain” aspects, here, the personal epiphanies…and Woody Allen did an excellent job with its creation!