Sat 23 Aug 2014
Writing the review of a movie two weeks later is an exercise that I should try more often. ‘Casee-tete Chinois’ is one of the two movies I have seen before I went to a vacation where other priorities pushed aside writing about movies. The last installment in the series of director Cedric Klapisch , starring Romain Duris, Audrey Tautou and Cecile De France was the least memorable of the two lighter summer comedies that I found appropriate for the mood and the times.
The film does have a lot of ingredients that would possibly make a success possible and even probable. A team of actors that now should not only know each other so well that the director needs only to raise an eyebrow in order to make things happen but who obviously enjoy acting together, and bringing on screen the romantic issues of their generation. A couple of kids who like almost any couple of kids steal the show as long as they are on screen and provide an emotional justification for the plot. Paris for a bit and Manhattan for most of the time – allegedly the best background for movies that directors and viewers could ask for.
And yet, the result is only half satisfying.
It may be that the plot of the French immigrant trying to settle in New York was brought to screen once too many? I can remember a few other such features (yes, some of the candidates to America may not have been French) starting with ‘Green Card’ starring Gérard Depardieu, and Andie MacDowell back in 1990. If the theme is back on screen maybe what is missing is some new and fresh angle in the infinite possibilities of approaching cultural gaps. Variations is a legitimate musical or cinematographic genre, but it needs to bring something new to be special. This film starts with a divorce, ends with a wedding, I am so happy to see Audrey Tautou happy and denying with a new film her intentions to quit acting, but the result is unconvincing entertainment. Maybe too many ingredients for a feel-good movie brought together do not necessarily make a good feel-good movie.