Ce n’est plus un hiatus, c’est presque une retraite. Miss J. et moi-même avons une vie trépidante et, à notre grand dam, n’avons réussi à faire vivre ce blog dont nous sommes si fiers et que vous avez la gentillesse de suivre en dépit de nos absences. Mlle Amber, une grande dame, vient à notre secours et partage son scepticisme devant le dernier opus de Michel Gondry. L’écume des jours, plutôt L’écume du snore (des ronflements) selon ses mots. Adapter Boris Vian … une gageure !
I had my doubts about this film before it even started. A wild haired woman accosted us as we waited for the INCREDIBLY SLOW staff and the lovely new Louxor cinema to serve us a drink. « this book had a most lasting affect on my life » she sighed. Upon finding that I had not read it she gasped, looked visibly shocked and instructed me to not go in until I had. I did not take her advice. I should have. I can only presume that the book is full of wonderful and creative madness, where anything is possible in a surreal Paris, where a piano can make you a cocktail and people drive in transparent cars while anthropomorphic mice live in a parallel world.
Sadly the only truly magical thing about this film was the budget – ‘wow’ you felt yourself thinking how much did it cost to have Roman Duris, Audrey Tautou, Gad Elmaleh and Omar Sy all in the same film? And they filmed in Paris, and they have loads of special effects! If you liked the Science of Sleep then you might like Gondry’s particular brand of faux naïve, cutesy effects. Or not.
Anyway the film – wealthy playboy Colin (Duris) meets kooky girl Chloé (Tautou), they fall in love and literally fly over Paris in a goddamn cloud. Meanwhile their gang: Nicolas, chef /butler/sex symbol (Sy) and Duris’ best friend Chick (Elmaleh) who embodies the meaningless of work and is addicted, literally, to the written word, gad about on killer ice-rinks or dog parties or other absurd things. Poor Audrey simpers and coughs, she has caught a flower (don’t ask), Duris splashes the cash until it runs out and their magic world literally decays and crumbles around them. He is even forced to get a job. He tries to save his love, but testimony to this being a French film he shags her best friend Alice (Aïssa Maïga) while she is putting on some mascara (sadly and badly). How sad. Thankfully Tautou dies in the end and her body is unceremoniously thrown into a mass grave. Phew.
Luckily while all this goes on you can distract yourself by playing spot that spot – “Oooh the communist building at Colonel Fabien”, I stage whisper to my boyfriend, “that herb place on rue d’Amsterdam” he shoots back, is that the Buttes Chaumont? We continue like this for the rest of the film.