Midnight in Paris – Review (Spoiler Free)

Midnight in Paris Poster - Wikipedia

Midnight in Paris is a warm and somewhat charming little film. It has Owen Wilson as a screenwriter who is attempting to write his first novel, one which he hopes contains even a seed of the greatness that the prominent novels of the 1920’s had. He spends his days on holiday in Paris slowly suffocating under his fiancé’s (Rachel McAdams) focus on everything but the city’s ‘true’ beauty, whilst also having to contend with her admiration for their ‘culturally educated’ friend (Michael Sheen). At night he wanders the city’s streets, seeking inspiration from them whilst also nostalgically thinking back to what he perceives as Paris’ golden age – the twenties. This Woody Allen film has a rather nice little message on nostalgia, and the effects that wishing to have lived in another time can have on a person. The fact that it then has great actors in supporting roles, who range from Marion Cotillard, to Tom Hiddleston, and to Adrien Brody, help makes this a rather endearing and recommendable film. It’s a shame that some of these really don’t have all that much screen-time, but still, those who have brief roles all do a lot with the time they are given.

The better you know the 1920’s and those who were prominent during that time, the more you will get out of this film. That’s not to say that you wouldn’t enjoy it otherwise, but the number of references within it do add a lot to the overall experience. Owen Wilson helps to contribute to the lightness of the movie, using his naive and mild-mannered style to great effect here, and he carries the film well. It’s easy to understand his character’s honest passion for Paris when we have the combined efforts of his enthusiastic performance and Darius Khondji’s cinematography to help us. It’s smooth and seductive and is exactly how we expect the romantic city to be portrayed.

You may have noticed that I’m skimming over plot details pretty lightly, and that’s because I believe it is best enjoyed going into this fairly blind. If you are at least slightly in love with Paris, nostalgically fond of the 1920’s, or just want a piece of entertainment that will transport you away for a couple of hours – then Midnight in Paris will do the trick. It’s certainly not the chick flick that I half thought it may be when going into it, instead it’s a very entertaining and even joyful film which is certainly worth a watch.

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21 comments

  1. Nice review. I thought it was one of the best films of 2011.

    1. I think it’s pretty good, but can’t rank it amongst the very best of 2011 – there were just too many great films out that year!
      Thanks for commenting 🙂

  2. I really liked this film. Script was amazing, and I have a love for that period so enjoyed all the references that you mentioned. Nice review man.

    1. Cheers, It’s certainly a good film.
      I also really liked the way that there is no explanation given for the unusual event that takes place within the film. It’s nice to see that just being allowed to exist without unnecessary information being added in.

  3. definitely going to watch this one after reading this!

    1. Thanks, I hope you enjoy it! It would be cool to hear your opinion if you do catch it.

      1. Thanks, will be sure to let you know!

  4. […] movie that I ought to watch already, Midnight in Paris, was spoiler free reviewed by […]

  5. Good review. One of the most enjoyable and delightful of Allen’s films to me. Wilson was great as Woody Allen as well and it’s a good performance that we rarely see from the dude where he isn’t just playing the same damn dude.

    1. Cheers, haha yeah I completely agree. I’m not really a fan of Wilson but think he’s great here. It also helps that he is surrounded by such great company and they all play their parts so well.
      Thanks for commenting!

  6. I didn’t love this film like everyone else seemed to. It only shone for me when Cotillard’s character was onscreen, although Wilson did a fine job. The scenes with Pill, Stoll and Brody (especially the latter) were also really good.

    1. I agree that Cotillard was the best thing about this film, and also that the others were also pretty great. Brody was a lot of fun! I really enjoyed the couple of minutes that he had on screen. 🙂

      I don’t know that I loved the film, but I did find it endearing and even heartwarming I guess. I certainly don’t have a problem recommending it to others.

  7. one of my absolute favorites of the year in 2011. tied, i think, with The Artist for me. Nice review here. I loved how delightful and surprising the film was. A great recommended watch!

    1. Thanks, it certainly is a really nice and endearing film. I deliberately tried to keep my review as spoiler free to keep the surprise factor there.
      Thanks for commenting!

  8. Nice review. I adore this movie; it was love at first sight. My favorite of 2011 and one of my favorites ever, actually.

    1. Cheers, I didn’t fall quite as head over heals for it as you seem to have done – but I can completely understand why you did; it is a very good film!

    2. In terms of 2011 films I would certainly rank Drive, Blue Valentine, and Black Swan above this one. Possibly others. But Midnight in Paris would be in my top ten I would have thought.

  9. This made my Top 10 for 2011. I loved this film. Great review.

    1. Thanks, I would imagine that it would be in my ten as well, although there were a lot of great films out that year!
      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  10. I can’t stand Owen Wilson but I loved this film…that’s how good it was! 🙂

    1. Haha yeah I’m not his biggest fan, but he was perfect for this role!

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