MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 7,960 this week

A Couch in New York (1996)
"Un divan à New York" (original title)

R  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  21 February 1996 (Belgium)
5.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.9/10 from 1,499 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 15 critic

Dr. Henry Harriston is a successful psychoanalyst in New York City. When he is near a nervous breakdown, he arranges to change his flat with Beatrice Saulnier from France for a while. Both ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(scenario), (scenario), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 1711 titles
created 19 Oct 2011
 
a list of 41 titles
created 10 Nov 2011
 
a list of 3690 titles
created 15 Jan 2013
 
a list of 9975 titles
created 25 Jul 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Couch in New York (1996)

A Couch in New York (1996) on IMDb 5.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Couch in New York.
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

'Je' is a girl voluntarily lock up in a room. 'Tu' is the script. 'Il' is a lorry driver. 'Elle' is the girlfriend.

Director: Chantal Akerman
Stars: Chantal Akerman, Niels Arestrup, Claire Wauthion
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In a small French colony, a drunken man kills someone. While a guillotine is being shipped in, he changes, becoming a good and popular man.

Director: Patrice Leconte
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Daniel Auteuil, Emir Kusturica
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A documentary look at the fate of Mexicans who cross the border into the United States.

Director: Chantal Akerman
In My Country (2004)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Langston Whitfield is a Washington Post journalist. His editor provocatively sends him to South Africa to cover the Truth and Reconciliation Commission hearings, in which the perpetrators ... See full summary »

Director: John Boorman
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Samuel L. Jackson, Brendan Gleeson
D'Est (1993)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A look at life in Eastern Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Director: Chantal Akerman
Stars: Natalia Chakhovskaia
Comedy | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  

This parody of the detective-story genre merrily detours into spoofing French foibles as well, making it more of an exercise in verbal gymnastics than a narrative with a mission. Esther is ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Rouffio
Stars: Michel Serrault, Michel Piccoli, Jean Carmet
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Director: Chantal Akerman
Stars: Mark Amitin, Eszter Balint, Stephan Balint
An Open Heart (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Mila and Javier are both heart surgeons. Married for ten years, they have two passions: their love and their job. But Mila unexpectedly becomes pregnant, and the perspective of a baby ... See full summary »

Director: Marion Laine
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Édgar Ramírez, Hippolyte Girardot
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Two quarreling lovers from opposite sides of the economic scale take central stage in this drama about Veronique and Adrien. Veronique is wealthy and from the provinces, Adrien is ... See full summary »

Director: Renaud Victor
Stars: Sandrine Bonnaire, Jacques Bonnaffé, Jean-Marc Bory
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  

Fred is a gambler and deep in debt. He owes crime boss Victor a lot of money and the time to pay has come. Gégé, his loyal friend, advises him to make money quickly, or face the ... See full summary »

Director: Bob Decout
Stars: Philippe Léotard, Annie Girardot, Jacques Penot
Director: Chantal Akerman
Stars: Sonia Wieder-Atherton
Comedy | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A young woman falls in love, then wakes up a decade later as the mother of a young boy who is also in the middle of a divorce.

Director: Sylvie Testud
Stars: Juliette Binoche, Mathieu Kassovitz, Aure Atika
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Beatrice Saulnier
...
Henry Harriston
Stephanie Buttle ...
Anne
...
Lizbeth Honeywell
...
Dennis
...
Campton
Kent Broadhurst ...
Tim
Matthew Burton ...
Wood
...
Stein
Bernard Breuse ...
Jerôme
...
Restaurant Patron
Boris Leskin ...
Cab Driver #1
Tiffany Fraser ...
Julie (as Tiffany Frazer)
Wendy Way ...
Employee at Airport
Jerry Dean ...
Cab Driver #2
Edit

Storyline

Dr. Henry Harriston is a successful psychoanalyst in New York City. When he is near a nervous breakdown, he arranges to change his flat with Beatrice Saulnier from France for a while. Both don't know each other and both find themselves deeply involved into the social settings of the other, because the decision to change their flats is made overnight. Could be the perfect amusement, but suddenly Henry finds himself beaten up by Beatrice' lover and Beatrice is considered to be Dr. Harriston's substitute by his clients. Written by Oliver Heidelbach

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Man... A Woman... A Dog... The perfect combination for romance...

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

|

Release Date:

21 February 1996 (Belgium)  »

Also Known As:

A Couch in New York  »

Box Office

Gross:

BEF 7,410,000 (Belgium)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Chantal Akerman has since criticized her actors, William Hurt and Juliette Binoche, for not helping her promote the movie, after early mixed reception and production problems. Akerman has since said that both actors were difficult to work with and that Binoche was "as cold as an ice cube". See more »

Soundtracks

NIGHT AND DAY
by Cole Porter
Copyright HARMS Inc.
Arrange and performed by Sonia Wieder-Atherton and Bruno Fontaine
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Enjoyable screwball comedy
18 November 2002 | by (Vancouver, B.C.) – See all my reviews

In Couch in New York, the first American film by acclaimed Belgian director Chantal Akerman, Dr. Henry Harriston (William Hurt) is a dour New York psychoanalyst who is close to exhaustion. He decides to place an ad in the Paris Herald Tribune offering to swap his New York apartment for a month. Henry ends up in the digs of a free-spirited dancer from Paris, Beatrice Saulnier (Juliet Binoche) and she takes over his swank New York penthouse. Obviously well to do, Henry's apartment is spacious, impeccably furnished, and meticulously cared for, while hers is messy, bohemian, and funky.

In what Ms. Akerman describes as "what Hollywood calls a double fish out of water film", this film is something of a curiosity yet it's one of the best screwball romantic comedies I've seen. The premise is totally ludicrous of course and off the wall but that's what makes it so special. Of course, I'm particularly open to films that pop the bubble of the psychiatric establishment.

Apparently Henry forgets to tell his patients he is going away and they come knocking on Ms. Saulnier's door and calling for appointments, hardly even noticing the change in doctors. Being a sweet and sympathetic soul and not wanting to turn people away, she listens to their stories for an hour and they pay her money for her advice (illegally of course). She learns quickly that all analysts have to say is "yeees" or "hmmmm" or "what comes to mind now?" and get paid big bucks. Of course, patients have the right to remain silent and sometimes nothing comes to mind (they can sometimes spend an hour in total silence and must still pay for the privilege). Ms. Saulnier is an understanding person and a good listener and, in quite a slap at the "professionals", achieves more success with Henry's patients (not to mention his dog Edgar) in one week than he apparently has in years.

Beatrice decides to continue to pretend to be Dr. Harriston's assistant and studies up on her Freud. Meanwhile in Paris, Henry must contend with Beatrice's aggressive boy friends, messy rooms, leaky plumbing and the hammering of a roof being repaired. Fed up with the problems in Paris, he returns to New York to stay with an old friend in a down home part of Brooklyn. Conveniently for the plot, the good doctor stops off at his office and finds Beatrice playing psychoanalyst and his patients miraculously improved. Finding Ms. Saulnier intriguing and attractive, he goes along with her game, pretending to be her patient. This sets off a process of mutual discovery and self-awareness that is quite predictable but nonetheless amusing and enlightening.

This was my first Akerman film and while I realize it is totally unlike her others, I really loved it and found both leads to be superb. Binoche never looked more alluring and Hurt is terrific in his role as the deadpan doctor. I don't know who's crazy, the majority of critics who trashed it or me, but I know for sure one of us is ready for the couch. I won't say any more about Couch in New York except that while it does unfold its magic at a very leisurely pace, the rewards are there for the patient (no pun intended). Since the ending left me with such a warm, fuzzy feeling, I'm thinking of calling Ms. Binoche and.well.on second thought.


2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
opening song nerone
Discuss A Couch in New York (1996) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?