Saturday, October 27, 2012

2 Days in New York

Julie Delpy's disappointing sequel to 2 Days in Paris finds its French heroine Marion in a happy relationship with Mingus (Chris Rock). They each have a child by an ex (in Marion's case, it is from her boyfriend in 2 Days in Paris). But their relationship is almost destroyed when Marion's father, exhibitionist sister, and her sister's boyfriend (also a distant ex) visit.

The acting is good. There area a few humorous cameos. Delpy is an appealing presence, and Rock is inherently clever. There is some touching commentary on the subtle ways in which Marion's family deals with the recent loss of her mother. Mingus has an amusing relationship with a cardboard cutout of Barack Obama.

Unfortunately, the film mostly goes for tired stereotypes and predictable gags. The French visitors are mostly pro-Obama, but they make some awkward racial comments. The men leer at the women in a large yoga class. Mingus is sometimes baffled by the French arguments. This cultural clash was already explored more humorously and thoroughly in the previous film, so these moments feel like a rehash.

Other parts are surreal and creative, but often more bizarre than funny. One can't blame Delpy for experimenting. Hopefully her next film will be more fulfilling.

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