Friday, March 28, 2014

Le Weekend (Rhoades)

Front Row at the Movies

“Le Week-End” Seems to Be Both Bitter and Sweet

Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades

You know we baby boomers are getting older when you see rom-coms starring 65-year-old Jim Broadbent and 64-year-old Lindsay Duncan, two likeable British actors usually seen in secondary film roles.

But here we have “Le Week-End,” the tale of a couple who returns to Paris many years after their honeymoon there in an attempt to rejuvenate their marriage. No easy task after all those years bickering with each other.

“Le Week-End” is playing at the Tropic Cinema.

Nick (Broadbent) is a college lecturer who has been reprimanded for telling a student that she should spent as much time on her studies as on her hair. Meg (Duncan) is a schoolteacher still soured over a long-ago infidelity by her husband. Their 30-year anniversary seems to be a crossroads, a make-it-or-break-it turning point for their marriage. He’s a bit of an insecure buffoon; she a bit of a harridan.

As we used to say at  Ladies’ Home Journal, Can this marriage be saved?

However, Nick still dotes on his wife, even if she makes it plain she’d welcome a new hubby. This becomes painfully obvious when they bump into Nick’s old college buddy (Jeff Goldblum) who has acquired a new wife.

This darkly realistic look at a marriage nearing its breaking point is funny, but not as funny as you’ll want it to be. Being privy to the fights and fears and flaws of this old married couple is at times uncomfortable, as if you’ve walked into the room in the middle of a tiff.

I liked it, but I would have preferred this bittersweet little movie to be a little less bitter and a little more sweet.

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