Film accurately depicts romance
Modern art, French culture, a jealous boyfriend and a blonde flirt unite in 2 Days in Paris.
Marion is an attractive blonde from France, played by the film’s writer and director, Julie Delpy, and her tattooed, rugged-looking boyfriend, Jack (Adam Goldberg), is an interior designer from the U.S. Their two-year relationship has led them to Paris where Jack is introduced to Marion’s culture for the first time.
Although the film did have some tidbits of originality as far as Jack being repulsed by the rabbit entrÈe for lunch with Marion’s parents, as a whole it could have used more original moments. It is no more than a snapshot, capturing a moment in a dysfunctional relationship.
This artsy film is an up-close and very personal clip of the lives of a couple. Delpy makes it clear that sex is an enormous part of the couple’s relationship, but there should be more substance after two years together. Jack is paranoid that Marion is pimping herself out to numerous men, including ex-lovers, and the French text messages only make him crazier. Delpy is clever by allowing the viewer to see this interaction between Marion and her men through Jack’s eyes because it forces the viewer to draw his or her own conclusions – it is never shown from a neutral standpoint.
Meanwhile, Marion is upset because Jack is taking too many photographs when she would rather have him share the moments with her. Rather than pursuing more time with Jack, she ignores him in a restaurant when she sees one of her ex-boyfriends and his friend dining at a nearby table. She begins with a few hostile words and then goes completely ballistic as she brings up his past affair with a 12-year-old prostitute.
One thing that Delpy definitely did correctly was the cinematography, but then again, it’s Paris: guaranteed class. The restaurants, the streets and the scenery were all charming. It’s no wonder that Paris is Marion’s real love in this film. Jack is just a confused bystander lost in French culture, and he expresses that well every time he tries to speak French or translate French.
When he and Marion are standing on the street arguing about her behavior toward men, he pulls out her cell phone and claims that the text messages, written in French, are of a sexual nature. In a sad attempt to translate one of the messages, he guesses what it means and a bystander calls him a "sicko." This is coming from people who appreciate the beauty of the human body in their artwork, but do not use bedroom talk on the street. French culture: one; American culture: zero.
It’s difficult to tell if the pair overcomes their dysfunction or if it drives them apart. It’s really unclear, but may be intentional in order to give the film mystery. Either way, that poor, paranoid, Jack, my fellow American, needs my sympathy. Ignorance is not bliss.