Saturday, June 18, 2011

Nostalgia Shop

I'm gonna be the hater.

Midnight in Paris fell flat in front of me.

Keep in mind two things:

1) I saw this with a packed house at Cinemapolis on a Friday night. I hated sitting with that audience as they raucously laughed knowingly at each carefully calculated literary/cultural reference in the film. As much as Allen's film may mock the one "pedantic" character (I forget his name), the film is carefully crafted to appeal to our hipster psuedo-intellectual selves. Us failed English majors feel SO smart as we watch this film. Makes me want to puke. I realize that this reaction then puts me in the dangerous place of thinking that I'm better than everyone else in the audience because I got the references AND I'm just way too cool to go along with the fun like everyone else. So be it.

2) SPOILERS. The "time travel" gimmick had already been spoiled for me. It's still charming. It just loses a lot of its power when the surprise is gone. I wish I could have walked into this one fresh.

There's plenty to like in Midnight in Paris, but I just can't jump on the praise wagon with Ben and Jason. Allen has made a fun little bourgeois film for a bourgeoisie audience, reinforcing how safe and fun our tidy world is. Welcome to the Nostalgia Shop.

-Bourgeois John

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