The main problem with this film is the script; Ivory and Jhabvala seem unwilling to whittle down Diane Johnson's novel into a movie, so they over-stuff the film with so many subplots that nothing works at all. The film feels badly chopped--like a four-hour film cut down to two hours in the harshest way possible. We jump from scene to scene, skipping over vast chunks of time. Meanwhile, Watts delivers yet another startlingly honest and raw performance, while Hudson provides a solid if not terribly sympathetic counterpoint. The rest of the charming cast have very little screen time, and to be blunt, some of them should have been deleted altogether (Modine's silly subplot is irrelevant until a cheap plot turn at the bitter end). And the film tries to have it all ways at once--funny, romantic, thoughtful, sentimental and tragic. With a bit of magical realism thrown in for no reason. But when it's going so many different directions at once, there's no way it'll ever get anywhere meaningful. This is very annoying, because there's a well-made film in here somewhere.
dir James Ivory|
scr Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, James Ivory
with Kate Hudson, Naomi Watts, Glenn Close, Thierry Lhermitte, Stockard Channing, Sam Waterston, Melvil Poupaud, Romain Duris, Leslie Caron, Matthew Modine, Bebe Neuwirth, Stephen Fry
release US 8.Aug.03; UK 19.Sep.03
Sisters in Paris. Hudson and Watts.
|"Two attractive actresses in starring roles in the same movie! Naomi Watts acts, Kate Hudson plays ... Kate Hudson." --Mike panick, Detroit 31.Jul.03|