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For Xavier Rousseau (Romain Duris), life is complicated. He’s just moved to New York City to be close to his kids because his British ex-wife Wendy (Kelly Reilly) moved there to be with a very tall American man. This also brings him close to his best lesbian friend Isabelle (Cecile De France) who is having his baby with her girlfriend Ju (Sandrine Holt). Meanwhile, he’s adapting to life in the States while pretending to be married to Nancy (Li Jun Li) for a Green Card. And, all the while, he finds himself pining after ex-girlfriend Martine (Audrey Tautou). Such complex situations should be familiar to those who’ve followed Xavier’s life in 2002’s The Spanish Apartment and 2005’s Russian Dolls both of which were also written and directed by Cedric Klapisch.
- John Keith
Performing slightly better at the Us box office than the 2005 film it follows in Cedric Klapisch’s trilogy, Chinese Puzzle still landed with a bit of a fizzle (especially considered to the initial response of the first film featuring this cast). Nominated only for Best Original Music at the Cesars, it ended up being a demure finale for a host of characters that have grown into rather banal adults over the past decade. Receiving a warm response from a variety of critics, this chapter is merely basking in the afterglow established by its predecessors.
Diehard fans of Klapisch’s L’Auberge espagnole (2002) and its sequel, Russian Dolls (2005) should be happy to see the director round out his Romain Duris headlining films into an actual trilogy with Chinese Puzzle. Though it potentially stands as a piece on its own, audiences may feel a bit lukewarm toward this outing without having experienced »
- Nicholas Bell
★★★☆☆Like a distant Gallic relative to Richard Linklater's Before trilogy - though worlds apart in terms of style and tone - it's been over a decade since Cédric Klapisch first introduced a multinational group of friends sharing an Barcelona apartment in Pot Luck (2002). Three years later, they were brought back together for a wedding in Russian Dolls (2005) and now a third outing in the form of Chinese Puzzle (2013). Combining the director's free-wheeling style and the series' protagonist's 'complicated' life, this is a warm, funny and inventive addition to the likable French series. Romain Duris returns as genial lead, Xavier, a writer in need of inspiration and finding it through the tumultuous twists his once tranquil life begins to take.
- CineVue UK
Chinese Puzzle (France: Casse-tête chinois), 2013.
Directed by Cedric Kaplisch.
When the wife of 40 year old Father of two, Xavier Rosseau leaves him taking the children with her to live in New York, he cannot watch them grow up from France and so follows them with the hope of living there himself. As a result, the complications of this soon unfold…
I can’t remember a time when I have seen the third part of a trilogy without watching its predecessors first. So, this may have been a first. Did it matter that this was the case with Chinese Puzzle? No. Did I feel that I missed out on character backgrounds? Again: no. This was probably due to the actors’ familiarity with their roles, I didn’t find myself wondering what had happened before to this group »
- Gary Collinson
Cool film stuff can be almost as fun as actually going to the movies. Think of a Batman cape, an Arnold Schwarzenegger action figure, or Goldeneye on the N64. Hell, the merchandising can often be more enjoyable than the actual film – remember how much fun the first few months of 1999 were before Star Wars: The Phantom Menace was actually released?
Yet, in the chase to make a quick buck out of devoted fans, some... let's just say less relevant, movie merchandise is churned out and flogged to the public.
Here then are 50 of the strangest (not ranked in order!) – expect action figures of obscure henchmen, 16-carat gold Twilight jewellery and some truly vomit-inducing burgers…
In Spider-Man 3, Peter »
For popular French actor, renowned primarily for his role in Heartbreaker, is now revisiting a different character for the third time, in Chinese Puzzle, the third in a trilogy of films by Cédric Klapisch’s, also including L’Auberge Espagnole and Russian Dolls.
The actor tells us what it was like revisiting a role, and how close he feels to the character of Xavier Rousseau in real life. Meanwhile he also discusses his role in Michael Gondry’s upcoming romantic flick Mood Indigo, which hits our cinemas this August.
Chinese Puzzle is released on June 20th, and you can read our review here.
The post The HeyUGuys Interview: Romain Duris on Chinese Puzzle and the Forthcoming Picture, Mood Indigo appeared first on HeyUGuys. »
- Stefan Pape
So often we see a Hollywood film begin with a swooping, aerial shot of a glorious Manhattan, with the Empire State Building gracefully standing tall, while the Statue of Liberty looks out knowingly into the distance. However when our protagonist Xavier arrives in New York, in Cédric Klapisch’s Chinese Puzzle, it’s a grey, miserable day, and the peak of the aforementioned skyscraper is hidden by clouds. This lone image sets the precedence for the rest of this title, as an authentic, foreigner’s take on New York, as not always being the romanticised, cinematic setting we’re often led to believe it is.
As the third – and seemingly final – chapter in the life of Xavier, played Romain Duris, following on from the actor’s previous collaborations with the filmmaker, L’Auberge Espagnole and Russian Dolls, the author is now going through something of a crisis, when his partner »
- Stefan Pape
He first went to study film in New York when he was 23. French director Cédric Klapisch, now 53, returned to the city for Chinese Puzzle, the third part of the comedy trilogy that started with Pot Luck (L’Auberge Espagnole) in Barcelona in 2002 and continued three years after in St Petersburg and London for Russian Dolls (Les Poupées Russes), all featuring the same characters falling in and out of love. Now Xavier, economics student turned writer and played by Romain Duris, heads for the Big Apple to be near his children who live with his ex Wendy, portrayed by Kelly Reilly. Former girlfriend Martine (Audrey Tautou) turns up – and there’s also Cecile de France from the original as Xavier’s lesbian friend Isabelle. How did Klapisch sustain the momentum of the characters and what does it feel like to grow old with them? »
- Richard Mowe
Capturing basic human interactions on film isn’t as easy as you’d think. Too often screenwriters and directors retreat into cliched dialogue and stock characters to the point where the people on screen feel as artificial as any rampaging CG monster. Cédric Klapisch’s Chinese Puzzle is different though, effortlessly serving up a blizzard of well observed moments, shifting relationships and fragments of honest emotion. This is that annoyingly rare thing: a film that really understands the complexities – the soaring joys and the crushing miseries – of modern love.
Our hero is Xavier Rousseau (Romain Duris), a 40 year old writer navigating some pretty choppy relationship waters. Framed through a Skype conversation with his publisher, we track his friendships and romances with three women; businesswoman and old flame Martine (Audrey Tautou), his lesbian best friend Isabelle (Cecile de France), and Wendy (Kelly Reilly), his estranged ex-wife and mother of his two children. »
- David James
Tuft of Fluff: Klapisch Bids Adieu to Globetrotting Crew
Diehard fans of Cedric Klapisch’s L’Auberge espagnole (2002) and its sequel, Russian Dolls (2005) should be happy to see the director round out his Romain Duris headlining films into an actual trilogy with Chinese Puzzle. Though it potentially stands as a piece on its own, audiences may feel a bit lukewarm toward this outing without having experienced the meandering yet considerable baggage the quartet of main characters have carried through two other films. Coasting mostly on the affable charm of its stars and likeable characters, this final chapter manages to walk a fine line between hopeful and melancholy as we at last leave them all behind. However, the most potent aspect of the film is perhaps the nostalgia one might feel as they’re forced to recollect the wonderful, scrappy charm of that first entry from over a decade ago.
Now nearing or entering their 40s, »
- Nicholas Bell
Chicago – Life is chaos. We in the human race can all agree on that. The new film “Chinese Puzzle” allows that chaos to happen, and the results are funny, affecting and warm. Writer/director Cédric Klapisch completes his “Spanish apartment trilogy,” bringing back the characters from “L’Auberge Espagnole” and “Russian Dolls,” to place them squarely in middle age.
The beauty of the film is that it works as a separate element, there is no need to have prior knowledge of the other films – although it probably the enhances the enjoyment. Cédric Klapisch creates lives that are challenged by turning age 40 (gasp!), an odd transition point when dealing with kids, divorce and multiple locations. The story is fresh, highly comic and propels itself due to the result of the organic decisions by the characters. There are also some parallel circumstances regarding fatherhood that are neatly applied, and a twist »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Here's a rundown of the specialty box office this weekend, which saw Cédric Klapisch's "Chinese Puzzle" find a promising debut, James Gray's much more anticipated "The Immigrant" fail to make much of an impression, and "Chef," "Ida," "Belle" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel" all hold on nicely later in their runs. The Debuts: Debut Winner of the Weekend: "Chinese Puzzle." While James Gray's "The Immigrant" had a higher per-theater-average, it had a lot of star power and the backing of The Weinstein Company. Which is why the fact that "Chinese Puzzle" just narrowly lost the PTA crown to it this weekend is so impressive. Released by Cohen Media Group, Cédric Klapisch's film follows a 40-year-old French father of two (Roman Duris) who heads to New York when the his wife leaves him and takes the children there. It comes after 2002's "L'Auberge Espagnole" and 2005's "Russian Dolls »
- Peter Knegt
I don’t know to what degree Cedric Klapisch thinks of himself as a topical filmmaker. His generally lighthearted movies tend to deal with unlikely attractions and living arrangement shenanigans, but he seems to capture something about our social moment no matter what he does. Chinese Puzzle is the third entry in his films about the romantic push-pull among the small group of friends who shared a Barcelona home in L’Auberge Espagnole. (Russian Dolls, set partly in St. Petersburg and Moscow, was the second entry.) The nominal hero of this rom-com mini-franchise, Xavier (Romain Duris), started off as a straight-arrow econ student with little knowledge of life, but has since become a jaded writer and family man. As Chinese Puzzle starts, he’s been married to Wendy (Kelly Reilly) for ten years. Now, however, Kelly is moving out and taking their children with her to New York. Xavier follows »
- Bilge Ebiri
Cédric Klapisch’s “L’Auberge Espagnole” and “Russian Dolls” weren’t really begging for a third and final entry in the global adventures of Xavier (Romain Duris), but it doesn’t make “Chinese Puzzle” any less enjoyable. What’s impressive is that despite the sometimes heavy subject matter—divorce, creative crisis and trying to find an affordable 2Br in New York City—Klapisch’s film is light and fizzy, set to a soundtrack of funk and salsa. We’ll claim that we laughed throughout the film, but we were probably heard full-on giggling with delight. The trilogy of films follows Xavier as he changes from college student to full-fledged adult to a father. “Russian Dolls” left Xavier paired with Wendy (Kelly Reilly), but “Chinese Puzzle” wastes no time in breaking them up after a decade together with two children. Now 40 years old, Xavier wants to help his lesbian friend Isabelle »
- Kimber Myers
R, 1 Hr., 53 Mins.
The makings of a grand historical epic –sweeping drama, personal tragedy, real-life heroism –are all there in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s 2006 novel about the Nigerian civil war of the late 1960s. But instead of distilling the book, the movie races through it, leaving great performances (notably by Chiwetel Ejiofor and Thandie Newton as a wealthy, emotionally complicated couple) overwhelmed by the unrelenting march of heart-wrenching moments. B –Adam Markovitz
Ai Weiwei The Fake Case
Not Rated, 1 Hr., 29 Mins.
The daring Beijing artist is shown at rest in quiet »
- EW staff
Three movies in and Xavier is still trying to get his life together. Romain Duris returns as the globe-trotting, follow-his-bliss French novelist in “Chinese Puzzle,” Cédric Klapisch's third film in a series that began in Spain with the comedy “L'Auberge Espagnole” in 2002. This time — following an outing to St. Petersburg in “Russian Dolls” — Xavier finds himself in New York, pursuing a life with the children that his ex, played by Kelly Reilly, took to the Big Apple. He's got to start over once again, and finds that life in New York is less like an Alicia Keys anthem than a. »
- Jordan Zakarin
Director Cedric Klapisch was in New York this week for the premiere of his new film Chinese Puzzle. The movie is a sequel to previous efforts L’Auberge Espagnole and Russian Dolls — starring Romain Duris and Audrey Tautou — which follow a group of international students from their 20s through their 40s (think a fictional, Gallic 7 Up series). The trilogy has achieved quite the cult following in France, or so Klapisch colorfully explained to us.“People stop me and very often they say, ‘I wanted to study abroad because of you.’ So the movie has had a really strong effect on people’s lives. Very often young people will have seen the movie ten times, twenty times, and they know the scenes by heart. It’s really impressive. When we were doing the promotion, Romain and I, we ended up in a bar in Bordeaux after a screening and two young »
- Veronique Hyland
"It's funny that you find life so complicated." Today's indie trailer is for a film called Chinese Puzzle, or Casse-tête chinois in French, another third film in a charming romantic comedy trilogy about a couple and their lives over the years. The film features the same cast/characters from Cédric Klapisch's Russian Dolls and The Spanish Apartment, including Romain Duris as Xavier Rousseau, along with Audrey Tautou, Kelly Reilly, Toshiko Onizawa, Cécile de France and Sandrine Holt. While it is a French film, they do speak English and it takes place mostly in New York City, and doesn't look that bad at all. I'll check it out. Watch the official trailer for Cédric Klapisch's Chinese Puzzle, found via YouTube: A 40-year-old father of two, still finds life very complicated. When the mother of his children moves to New York, he can't bear them growing up far away from »
- Alex Billington
"L'Auberge Espagnole," "Russian Dolls" -- now "Chinese Puzzle," the third installment of Cédric Klapisch's trilogy about a group of international friends, has arrived, and premieres in New York and Los Angeles on May 16th before expanded in following weeks. After his ex-wife Wendy (Kelly Reilly) leaves him in Paris to move with their kids to New York, Xavier (Romain Duris) follows his family to the city and attempts to piece together a life while writing a novel and basically un-jumbling everything else. "Chinese Puzzle" was a big hit in its native France and stars Duris and Reilly as well as Audrey Tautou and Cécile De France from the two earlier films in the trilogy. Check out the colors, charmingly awkward tensions and fun dance sequences in the trailer, exclusive to Indiewire, below: »
- Taylor Lindsay
The first figure skating competition of the 2014 Winter Olympics is not a individual event, as it was in past games. New for the Sochi Olympics is the team figure skating event, which lets each participating country submit one skater (or one pair) per category in both short and long programs.
For the U.S. short programs, Ashley Wagner is the women's singles participant. She'll skate starting at 11:10 a.m Et, live stream available here, and here are some fun facts about the 22-year-old who was born on a U.S. Army base in Germany and has lived in six different U.S. states.
Fave actress: Natalie Portman
Fave movie: "Atonement"
Pet: A German wirehaired pointer named Millie
Her charity: Classroom Champions
Collects: Russian dolls and charms on her Pandora bracelet
Fave pump-up song: "Lonely Boy" by the »
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