On a visit to Paris, Hollywood screenwriter and would-be novelist Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) falls in love with the city to the degree that he actually journeys to the 1920s and the city’s community of famous artists… One of those rare things, a Woody Allen box-office hit, perhaps because of its light touch, romantic portrayal of Paris and the performance of Wilson as yet another one of those Allen substitutes, this time an unusually successful melding of their personalities. The director is simply having fun here, with the literary and artistic icons that are part of his cultural education; the result is a sweet Purple Rose of Cairo fantasy that teaches us to live here and now.
2011-U.S.-Spain. 100 min. Color. Produced by Letty Aronson, Jaume Roures, Stephen Tenenbaum. Written and directed by Woody Allen. Cast: Owen Wilson (Gil Pender), Rachel McAdams (Inez), Marion Cotillard (Adriana), Michael Sheen, Kathy Bates, Adrien Brody… Tom Hiddleston, Carla Bruni.
Oscar: Best Original Screenplay. Golden Globe: Best Screenplay.
Last word: “Of course I’m partial to New York because I was born there and grew up there, but if I didn’t live in New York, Paris is the place I would live. I get great enjoyment out of presenting Paris to the cinema audience the way I see it. Just as with New York, where I present it one way, and other directors present it other ways, somebody else could come and shoot Paris in a completely different way. I want to present it my way, projecting my own feelings about it.” (Allen, Wild About Movies)