Mathias Gold (Kevin Kline), a penniless fifty-odd-year-old New Yorker, lands in Paris. Cynical, and at the end of his tether, he looks forward to selling the mansion house his late father owned in the Marais district. But what he finds out there just appalls him: his secretive dad had never told him he had acquired the property as a life lease, a typically French custom of which he never heard. As a consequence, not only will poor Mathias be unable to sell the house into cash (at least as long as Mathilde Girard (Dame Maggie Smith) stays alive), but he will have to pay the old lady a pension as part of the bargain.Written by
Lefebvre says he bought his boat with a viager and that he was lucky because the owner died six days later. Under French law the seller must live for at least 20 days after the contracts are signed. See more »
Midway through the credits, Mathias reveals his final decision on what he will do with the apartment and why. Additionally, after the end credits Mathias asks LeFebvre where he learned to speak English. See more »
Were it not for the fact that I had already read reviews, I would have been shocked by this movie, because it was not, in fact, a comedy. That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the film. It is neither light nor heavy, but rather the perfect balance.
It addressed the fact that there is no 'following your heart' or doing whatever feels right to you, without affecting other people. Mostly, there will be negative consequences/effects, but when you and the people around you open yourselves to truth, no matter how difficult, healing comes and eventually, a positive effect. I highly recommend this movie.
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