Paris Can Wait (2016)
Directed by: Eleanor Coppola | 92 minutes | comedy, drama | Actors: Diane Lane, Arnaud Viard, Alec Baldwin, Elise Tielrooy, Élodie Navarre, Serge Onteniente, Pierre Cuq, Cédric Monnet, Aurore Clément, Davia Nelson, Eleanor Lambert
Besides Francis and Sofia, Francis’ wife and Sofia’s mother Eleanor Coppola now also makes films. She makes her debut at the age of 81 (!!) with her first feature film ‘Paris Can Wait’, a film that is inspired by events in her life. Diane Lane plays Anne Lockwood, wife of a successful film producer. Due to earache she can’t go on the plane with her husband. She decides to drive to Paris earlier with a business partner of her husband. The journey from Cannes to Paris normally takes about eight hours, but her French travel companion takes her on an experience through France and an internal quest for her own happiness. This thinking about her life is done on the basis of food, wine and beautiful places.
This sounds inspiring, but unfortunately that is not the case. ‘Paris Can Wait’ is made up of clichés. That already starts with Anne and her husband Michael. He is the prototype workaholic who pays little attention to his wife and she is the “empty-nest mother” incarnate. Now that she has all this time to herself again, she wonders what to do with her life. Then her male traveling companion, the Frenchman Jacques Clement. He’s a natural charmer who can easily live on someone else’s pocket and seems to have a different sweetheart in every town. Put these two in a French classic car and the journey can begin.
On that journey, Jacques continues to make half efforts to wrap Anne around his finger. The fact that she is married to his business partner does not always seem to matter and Anne sometimes does not seem unwilling either. She enjoys the attention she so often seems to lack. That attention helps her to see what is really important in life. And this too is too predictable. Of course she sees the light and of course she won’t give in to this charming French too easily. ‘Paris Can Wait’ therefore feels like a snack that you don’t have to think about for too long. It is all according to the fixed pattern and the film never manages to surprise the viewer. More original choices in the development of the main character could have made ‘Paris Can Wait’ a more enjoyable film. What remains now is a slightly too easy, clichéd trifle