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Paris, Manhattan

What would Woody do?

There’s a sprinkling of magic in Sophie Lellouche’s debut feature about a young woman obsessed by Woody Allen searching for the elusive pathway to happiness. In Lellouche’s vision, Allen is the know-all guru, whose poster takes pride of place in the bedroom of Alice (Alice Taglioni), a young Parisienne with a particular view of the world. In the early scenes, Alice seeks reassurance from Woody, who peers at her quizzically from the elevation of the wall, confirming that life is worth living – if only for Louis Armstrong and Swedish movies. But as the action moves from Alice’s room to the real world, where her reality includes the busy pharmacy that she runs and the never-ending matchmaking in which her father (Michel Aumont) indulges, the truths that are revealed come from delicious situations in which we become embroiled. The film hits its stride as Alice meets her match in Victor (Patrick Bruel); eyes meeting across a crowded room, he delivers a fundamental truth that Allen himself well might have delivered: ‘We are all alone – nothing lasts except death.’ In running the pharmacy inherited from her father, Alice takes care of her customers by giving them copies of Woody Allen movies to resolve their various ailments. Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask) is one of her favourites – especially the scene in which Allen shares a bed with a sheep. Even a would-be burglar is given a package of Allen DVDs in a scene that is one of the film’s funniest. The performances are all solid with that extra magic coming from Taglioni and Bruel. There’s a lively and lovely escalation to the finish line and it is not until the very end that the film’s emotional punch is delivered. Needless to say, Paris is always at her best and there’s a simple pleasure in taking this Paris-Manhattan journey. – Louise Keller, Urban CinephileOfficial Trailer
Showtimes: 

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Directed by: 
Sophie Lellouche
Running Time: 
90
Country(ies): 
France
Language: 
French with English Subtitles
Starring: 
Alice Taglioni, Patrick Bruel, Marine Delterme, Louis-Do de Lenquesaing
Screenplay by: 
Sophie Lellouche

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