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|Index||33 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I watched this film in cinema, because I quite enjoyed the first movie,
"2 Days in Paris" - it contained some genuinely funny and also charming
scenes and was a well-executed rom-com that would in principle please
both men and women.
It's unfortunate that I can't say the same about its sequel. To begin with, structurally it mirrors exactly the first film - cultural differences, relationship put under test, climax and separation, relief and happy ending. This lack of innovation alone wouldn't have spoiled the movie, if there had been at least some well-devised humor, a good chemistry between the lead actors or realistic behavior by the characters to start with.
However, the French characters just misbehave to the point of being totally unbelievable and the jokes are overall nothing short of adolescent. In addition to that, the plot recycles too many really old ideas, like the main character selling her soul and then wanting it back or inventing a terminal disease to calm down her neighbors and then trying to cope with their attempts to help her.
The movie had its few funny moments when it was focusing on the relationship between Marion and her sister, Rose or when Marion's and Mingus' children mimic socially highly unacceptable behavior that they observed with their French visitors during an art exhibition. However, for the most part, the jokes are predictable and just not funny. Furthermore, given that the chemistry between Julie Delpy and Adam Goldberg was much better than between Julie Delpy and Chris Rock, I would recommend watching the first movie instead, if you haven't done so yet. On the other hand, if you have, then you already know the sequel as well.
I have to say this movie kept me laughing! I was a Julie Delpy fan anyway,so when I saw that Chris Rock was in it & they were playing a couple I thought this could be interesting. I really loved that the movie had great pacing. It moved along pretty quickly. When the family finally arrived from France the movie shifts into high gear. I especially loved the script.I never knew what a great writer Julie Delpy was!The father is a hoot,I loved that the sister thinks that her & Chris Rock have this connection(Even if he's with her sister,and she came with her boyfriend.}I love how things being said in french & English get mixed up. I can see that Chris Rocks time on Broadway is paying off and he's picking better movies. Anyway give this movie a shot you won't be disappointed.
A good idea before watching a film sequel would be to check out the
original, imagine watching Return of The Jedi without knowing that
Darth Vader was Luke Skywalker's father (apologies if I've spoiled that
for anybody). Well, I agreed to watch 2 Days in New York today without
any idea that it was the follow-up to 2 Days In Paris, a French film
about relationships, I found out. Horrified that I had been tricked
into watching (what i assumed was) a Romance film, I was expecting the
worst, but this was actually quite funny, not as funny as The Dictator,
but certainly not a romance, more of a drama about mad families.
Chris Rock plays Mingus and Julie Delpy plays Marion, a couple in their late 30s who both have kids from previous relationships. They're a classic middle-class couple, living in a nice New York apartment and both with good jobs. However, Marion's family from France quickly arrives to visit her, and all sorts of madness ensues, from the younger sister who is constantly craving sex (with anyone), to the sister's boyfriend, who brings drug dealers back to the apartment. The film is like a sophisticated version of Meet The Parents, and without a doubt the only time I've seen Chris Rock in a serious role, playing a responsible guardian in the film rather than the comedian we all know and love, but it works. The film doesn't directly follow on from the original, (or so my friends told me, they could have just been lying), so you can watch it as a stand-alone film, I certainly enjoyed it. Surprisingly good.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Just a couple of minutes in, I realized that Delpy has suddenly gotten
older. That's not a problem at all, but now she reinvents herself as a
sort of Diane Keaton while still Woody Allen's muse, with the glasses
half way down her nose and constant verbal notes to self, and all the
insecure, but kind of intellectual but still crazy enough to say a
dirty word hihi, with all the New Yorker do not care how I dress
attitude and wardrobe. Other than lack of originality, still NOT a big
problem, until she conveniently portrays the french visiting relatives
as some sort of peasants who are always either high or drunk, and which
smell because they don't bathe enough and are generally loud and
obnoxious. To create some comical situations, no doubt, but with little
success. Talk about narrow minded preconceptions, but what do you call
it when it comes from a compatriot!? I guess Delpy saw fit to remake
the bland Very Bad Trip into a pseudo intellectual cross culture
cardboard cutout. Well, mission accomplished, mamie. The terminal
disease bit deserves a special note just for how stretched and juvenile
distastefully it is done. All in all a weak effort.
One last foot note: I've never been a great Chris Rock fan, but between the rest of them, he truly shines.
I saw this last night and could not stop laughing. It is difficult to
keep pacing throughout a movie but this movie does that and keeps you
laughing throughout. While other reviewers seem offended by the antics
of the French family, many of us in the audience nodded realizing we
all have those crazy members in the family who left under their own
devices act insane.
Chris Rock plays the straight man in this movie which is a refreshing change of pace. The chemistry of the cast is evident throughout in how familiar they are with one another and how comfortable the actors seems to be. It is easy to believe that you have walked into a crazy family dynamic. The storyline is quirky and plot a little light but the laugh out loudness of this movie more than makes up for it.
Coming from someone who enjoyed "2 Days in Paris" but was annoyed by
the forever cynical and far too whiny Adam Goldberg, "2 Days in New
York" is an altogether better rehashing of its predecessor from
writer/director Julie Delpy (but this time in New York and with Chris
Rock). Starring Delpy, once again as the main character Marion, "2 Days
in New York" also sees the same actors reprising their roles, including
Alexia Landeau as Rose, the antagonistic sister and Alexandre Nahon as
Manu, the horned-up ex-boyfriend (and in this film, Rose's current
boyfriend). Delpy, the woman obsessed with exploring finite segments of
relationships, has written and directed a film which is visually
nowhere near excellent, but does contain an abundance of very witty
dialogue that rivals the likes of Woody Allen
if Woody Allen was a
neurotic French woman. Let me put it this way; only in a Julie Delpy
movie could one hear a "Waiting For Godot" joke followed by a
The Plot: The very beginning of "2 Days in New York" neatly ties up all loose ends from the previous Jack and Marion relationship and quickly delves into the story of Marion and her new African American (you've hooked me already) boyfriend Mingus (I know, what an unfortunate name) played by Chris Rock. Their relationship is described to be something of a fairytale (but not quite a Disney fairytale, because they are in an interracial relationship). But when Marion's very French family comes to visit, a series of catastrophically comical Woody Allen-esque happenstances ensue, which could result in a breakup; and more astoundingly yet another failed relationship for Marion.
While the chemistry between Rock and Delpy is very convincing here, Delpy's writing is still the driving force which allows this story to work so well. And the reason the writing works so well is, like a great piece of stand-up comedy, Delpy has created a film centered around a series of culturally comical skits dealing with the French/American interactions, or cultural relations. But more impressive (and maybe more importantly) this female Woody Allen has created a venue for Chris Rock to find a happy-medium between his weak dramatic abilities and his strong comedic skills.
Chris Rock as an Actor: I've never thought much of Rock (maybe the funniest comedian alive) as an actor. And who would blame me with a filmography which includes "Grown Ups", "Head of State" and "Osmosis Jones". But, with that said, a movie like "2 Days in New York" sees a type of role Chris Rock should be striving to get. The Mingus character is one that while conducive to a scene or two of Rock's babbling stand-up bit, is accentuated by loads of very subtle adult comedy and some very low key romantic moments, that which showcases Rock's acting potential in a non-slapstick fashion.
Final Thought: Even though, for some people, this entire film may feel like a retelling of its predecessor, only with the characters being a little bit older and the addition of Rock, the "2 Day" premise (as a whole) is still a very strong one that hasn't gotten old yet. In my opinion, even if all of the jokes are based on the familiar lost in translation sequences, Delpy's joke writing is so strong that through her films audiences can see the blueprints of what a good culture clash romantic comedy is suppose to look like. Long story short, if you are trying to decide between going to see "2 Days in New York" or "To Rome with Love", I'll put it to you this way: interracial relationships all the way.
Written by Markus Robinson, Edited by Nicole I. Ashland Follow me on Twitter @moviesmarkus
When the movie began I turned to my fellow cinema goer and asked, is this the film??? And for the first 10 minutes we wondered if we'd made a mistake choosing this film over the other option... A kiss for Jed. But I can safely report that its well worth a watch!!! Its laugh out loud funny at times and has a heart :)Its uplifting and different. I was very impressed with Chris Rock playing a character slightly outside his comfort zone, and for taking on what I would consider to be a risky project, it certainly paid off and he was very believable as a 'real' character. anyone with interesting in-laws will appreciate and get a laugh out of this film. So go see it!!
I think it's hilarious that some of the reviewers chastise the FRENCH Julie Delpy for portraying French people abroad in an unbelievable and unflattering light. Yeah of course you are more likely to be right! Part of the charm of the movie is showing that many cultures, when travelling, behave far more informally than they do at home. The situations here are supposed to be caricatures and not politically correct plastic people and they work well. And yes, the French talk about sex a lot - it's part of their charm - and they like to embarrass each other too. These guys are supposed to be from Brittany which isn't Parisienne sophistication but rural grit and it makes for a very funny movie that doesn't contain a Allen-esque message but is great entertainment pure and simple. Don't come to the movie expecting Chris Rock standup and zaniness (great casting for that reason alone) but to be humoured in a gentle way more reminiscent of slapstick than Woody Allen. Julie Delpy writes very well and maintains a good pace as director. All in all a job well done.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
When we last left Marion (Julie Delpy) in "2 Days in Paris," she and
her boyfriend, Jack (the Adam Goldberg character), were gradually
coming to the realization that they weren't compatible. This was during
a two-day trip to Marion's hometown of Paris, where Jack, an American,
was in the thick of life-altering culture shock. Although the film
ended with the two of them in an embrace, there was the inescapable
sense that they would not make it as a couple. And indeed, "2 Days in
New York" begins with Marion telling the audience, via a simplistic
fairytale-like voice-over narration and a crude puppet theater, that
she and Jack had split up but not before Jack fathered her son. She's
now back in New York and living with a radio talk show host named
Mingus (Chris Rock), who has a younger daughter from a previous
marriage. They have successfully formed a blended family and, by all
appearances, are quite content.
But then Marion's family arrives from France for a two-day vacation. There's her goofy father, Jeannot (Delpy's real life father, Albert), a new widower who tried unsuccessfully to smuggle a series of salamis into the country under his clothing. His English is just as bad as it ever was, and when the mood strikes him, he still has a lot of fun digging keys into the sides of parked cars. And then there's her sister, Rose (Alexia Landeau), who does whatever she can to be a rival and an annoyance. She will, for example, use her training as a child psychologist to overanalyze situations and find problems where none exist, even going so far as to suggest Marion's son is autistic. She will wander the apartment nude in full view of Mingus. She will attend one of Marion's yoga classes knowing full well she isn't wearing a bra. She will ask the wrong questions, start catfights, and in general be snippy.
She's also, as we soon discover, a bit of a sex maniac. Here enters her boyfriend, Manu (Alex Nahon), who tags along on the vacation without having been invited. If you recall from "2 Days in Paris," Manu was once Marion's boyfriend, one of many, much to the shock of Adam Goldberg's character. Manu is an absolute train wreck of a guest a rude, obnoxious, ignorant, insensitive man who wouldn't know tact even if it came up and bit him. He will clip his toenails at the dining room table while everyone is eating breakfast. When he first arrives, he thinks he's being smooth when he asks Mingus where he can score some pot; when Mingus replies that he has long since given the habit up, Manu can only mutter in French, "The only black man who doesn't smoke." He will loudly have sex with Rose in Mingus' bathroom, and it's quite possible they made use of his electric toothbrush.
Adding fuel to the fire is Marion, who has always been a bit impulsive and becomes hopelessly neurotic when in the presence of her family. It's almost as if being in her natural element stirs up thoughts and behaviors repressed by her Americanization. In the previous film, you may recall, she almost got into a physical altercation with an ex- boyfriend who made frequent sex trips to Thailand; in this film, simply being in the presence of her family makes her behave abnormally. Could there be something more going on? As she struggles to maintain personal and domestic stability, she frets over an upcoming exhibition of her photography, part of which will involve the auctioning off of her soul. Although it's really just a conceptual artistic experiment (Marion doesn't believe in the existence of an actual soul), the film still entertains the notion that actor and filmmaker Vincent Gallo is the devil.
Mingus, unquestionably the film's most rational character, will understandably struggle to keep his sanity in check. His favorite method of coping with stress is locking himself in his office and having one- sided conversations with a life-sized cardboard cutout of Barack Obama. It's not as if he doesn't try to make the best of the situation; he simply realizes after a while that certain relationships aren't meant to be. In one of the film's most interesting scenes, the ever-present language barrier prevents Mingus and Jeannot from having a meaningful conversation during dinner, as does Manu's apparent inability to accurately translate English into French. Example: When Mingus explains that he has two talk shows on public radio and one on Sirius, Manu tells Jeannot, "He says he has the flu, and it may be serious."
Although Julie Delpy doesn't wear as many hats as she did for its predecessor having relinquished music, singing, and editorial responsibilities to others she still had a great deal of creative control over "2 Days in New York," serving as the star, the director, and the producer. This time, she shares screen writing credit with two other people, which may account for the film's appropriately chaotic screwball tone. Indeed, the film is funny, albeit in a humanistic sort of way; we laugh because most of the characters are just as annoying as they are lovable, and whether or not we care to admit it, we can see something of ourselves in them. As was the case with "2 Days in Paris," we're not pressured into feeling any particular way about anyone. We see their faults just as plainly as we see their strong suits, and at no point is anything reduced to simple black and white terms.
-- Chris Pandolfi (www.atatheaternearyou.net)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Its obsessed with sex, its crass, neurotic and just not credible. The characters are contrived, and my wife and I wished we gave up earlier than minute number 12. I'm sure there must be some New York families like this, but hopefully not too many, because this is a poor fabrication of a pathetic scenario that left if not caring what is going to happen next. We have lived in France - and never met anybody as bizarre as the characters here. The credibility of the customs scene is around zero- I've never known anybody that stupid. The wanna-be Woody Allen directing left Woody Allen looking good - and I don't like Woody Allen. We soon found something else better to do with our lives than waste it on this film.
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