Sunday, June 1, 2014

Paris for Le Week-End

Nothing is better than effortlessly traveling to an idyllic place over the course of two hours. No packing, no airline snacks and best of all no long lines at customs. Such was the case when I visited Paris via my local cinema this past weekend.

I caught the charming comedy/drama Le Week-End this past weekend and found it delightful. Filmed in Paris, the film tells the tale of a British couple (actors Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan) celebrating the 30th anniversary of their crumbling marriage. I won't spoil the plot for you but the story is part character study, part portrait of a marriage and part travelogue. And the City of Lights is in all its glory as the celebrated Montparnasse Cemetery, Sacré -Coeur Basilica and of course, the Eiffel Tower compete for screen time.

Broadbent and Duncan as the long-married British couple

A suite at the historic five star Hôtel Plaza Athénée is the weekend home for the bickering travelers (viewers will recognize its stairway in the final Sex and the City finale and Jack Nicholson's hotel of choice in Somethings Gotta Give). The couple stays in the "same suite that Tony Blair once slept in"
and viewers also get a quick glimpse of the cozy and popular Philipe Starck designed Bar 228. While the hotel is not for the average budget, I highly recommend a visit if you find yourself in Paris (note: the 100 year old hotel on 25 avenue Montaigne is currently undergoing renovations with plans to reopen this summer).

Living room and bedroom of the suite above and below

A room with a view
New Wave film buffs will also recognize the famous dance scene from Luc Goddard's Band à  part (Band of Outsiders) and actor Jeff Goldblum steals the movie as a self-involved, non-stop talker/writer/Cambridge colleague living in Paris. Tres magnifique!

Le Week-End is in limited release and also avail be on Netflix. Happy armchair travels!

Photo Credits: Nicola Dave/Music Box Films

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