Tag Archives: movie time

Minuit à Paris

I’ve you been following me on here lately, you might get the impression that going to the cinema is basically all I do these days. You would be correct. I’ve been six times in two weeks.

Last night, I was particularly cultured and saw an Argentinian film (in Spanish with French subtitles) called La Mirada Invisible (The Invisible Eye). It was interesting and extremely tense—excellent direction and acting—but I can only recommend it if you have a personal interest in the film’s political context of 1982 Buenos Aires. Otherwise, the disturbing final scene is not worth your anguish. I had to watch an episode of Glee when I got home to shake my disturbed heebie jeebies, but the feeling lingered. Even today I felt disturbed until…

I saw My Favorite Movie So Far of 2011! The (albeit potentially temporary) award goes to…Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris.

I usually have mixed feelings about Woody Allen, but this one I loved from beginning to end. It’s as if he timed it just for me. Not only was it a pleasure watch a montage of scenery in Paris and think, check, been there this year, done that this year, seen that this year, but because I’m in the middle of Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, which was wonderfully perfect for reasons I can’t explain without spoiling the entire movie. I will only say this much: Adrien Brody’s small role is magnifique.

It was released here in France last week. It opens in the U.S. on Friday, and I really hope that all of my readers stampede to the cinema that day. And when you see it, please note that the Rodin Museum guide is played by none other that the First Lady of France.

A pretty good week in Angry Town

You haven’t heard much from me this week. Is it because
(a) the internet has been even more infuriating than usual,
(b) I’ve actually been doing stuff,
(c) I found Season 1 of The L Word in the bargain bin at the video store, tried to make it a productive exercise by watching it in French, but couldn’t stand the dubbing, so I gave up on the French part and just let my addition spiral out of control, or
(d) all of the above.

Last Saturday, Abby and I went to the Angers Tattoo Show. “Angry Town Tattoo Show?!” you ask, perplexed by what seems to be an oxymoron. We were rather surprised ourselves. But indeed, there was a big convention of tattoo artists right outside this un-inked town. Booth after booth of tattoo artists at work, people walking around with bandages on their freshest ink, and a delightful parade of subcultures we didn’t even know existed in France, all set to the constant buzz of tattoo pens.

Abby's face pretty accurately sums up our excitement.

On Monday, I stumbled upon this concert in the big square.

Piano dans la place

The banner says “United in diversity.” My first thought was, “Really? In Europe, a white guy playing piano counts as diverse?” The occasion was legit, though. A speaker explained that May 9 would have been the 200th birthday of Franz Lizt, who purportedly visited and loved Angers.

As my attempt to watch The L Word dubbed in French suggests, I’ve been making an effort to watch more TV and movies unsubtitled while I have the chance. Tuesday night, I watched a thoroughly delightful film called Le Petit Nicolas, based upon a beloved series of books. An English-subtitled version exists, though sadly, it has yet to be released in the U.S. After you watch this trailer, you will want to join me when I sit in Hollywood with a sign until they release it in the Land of the Free.

On Wednesday, a colleague invited me to see a film called Tomboy. I adored it, and I hope it gets released in the U.S. and if it doesn’t, I may have to personally procure pirated Region 1 copies to share it with the queer theory and film theory professors I had at Macalester who would gobble it up and immediately add it to their syllabus. You should watch this trailer even if you don’t speak French. The premise, just to help you out, is that a kid who’s new to the neighborhood introduces himself as Mikael and proceeds to have a delightful summer. The twist at the end of the trailer is when the mom asks, “You told everyone you’re a boy? Why did you do that?”

On Thursday, my now constant partner in crime Abby and I attended one of Angry Town’s best events yet: a night of electronic music and video games! They set up arcade games and consoles in a classy theater, and the place filled up with that rare elusive species of Angry Town ‘ipsterz.

Is it me, or does the forum of the theater look like a red version of the room in The Matrix with the drawers?

The bartenders dressed to match the theme of the night.

Last night, Abby gave me a new ‘do for a night out on the town.

Ta-do!

Si on va au ciné?

Nearly half of the movies that play in French cinemas at any given time are in English. Sometimes they’re given French titles, which may or may not make sense. Sometimes they’re released with their original English titles. Another popular option, however, is to give the film a new English title. It’s especially amusing when I can’t figure out what the logic behind the re-naming process is.

For example:

It was explained to me that French people wouldn't understand the innuendo of the title "No Strings Attached," but the subtitle "Friendship has benefits" remains unchanged. In this case, I think they changed the name because of the unfortunate market assumption that French people won't go a movie unless there's a 100% chance of sex.

"Mean Girls" was retitled "Lolita Malgré Moi" ("Lolita Despite Me"). The new title is (a) nonsensical and (b) unnecessary. Everyone in France could figure out what "Mean Girls" means.

I found this phenomenon funny until I realized —uh DOY eee—that we do exactly the same thing in America. It can get confusing when you’re trying to find trailers to share with your friends on your online sounding board.

That brings me to the point of my post: to share with you the two movies I’ve seen this week. They were both fantastic, albeit for different reasons; they both have imminent U.S. release dates; they both have great labor politics; and best of all, they both feature strong female leads bringing men around to their cause.

The French title of the first one is Les Femmes du 6ème Étage”—”The Women on the Sixth Floor”—but it’s being released in the U.S. under the title Service Entrance.

I had a surprisingly hard time finding the second one online, because the English title is Made in Dagenham but the French release English title is We Want Sex Equality (again with the 100% chance of sex!)

[Correction: According to IMDB, this one was released in the U.S. last November. Look for it on DVD.]
My point is: run, don’t walk, to see both of them.