Directed by Cédric Klapisch.
Written by Cédric Klapisch.
Starring Romain Duris and Audrey Tautou.
Release Year: 2002
Review Date: 7/7/03
Well, after watching the first half of the
film two weeks ago--only to have the print catch fire in the
projector during my viewing--I slipped over to the Embarcadero to
catch the film’s second hour last week...and, man, was it
You know, there IS a plot to “L’Auberge
Espanole” that centers around this strange-lookin’ French dude named
Xavier (Romain Duris) that has to study in Barcelona for a year in
order to get this totally sweet job at some stiff firm in Paris.
So, he lives in a group house with other students and has the time
of his life...et cetera.
But, for me, all I can remember about the
film is how much I love these characters, and that is what makes it
one of the most coolest movies I have seen this year. I mean, you
get this shitty-looking apartment where a Brit, a Dane, a German, an
Italian, Xavier and a Barcelona local are basically just hangin’ out
for two hours, and it works. I mean, it really works. Just
watching them have to deal with each other in four different
languages is cool, but the characters are just so likable that you
just lose track of the time--one of those rare films that really do
make you want to stick around well after the lights come up in the
theater, because you just want to see what other trouble they will
get into or what conversation on life they are going to have next or
who is gonna kiss who next or ANYTHING...just give me a little bit
This film reminded me a lot of my trip to
Rome, because more so than the other European cities that I have
visited, Rome really seemed to be a potpourri of Americans and
Europeans just thrown into the mix, and whenever we went out at
night you would hear some people speaking French, and some other
folks speaking English, and some other folks speaking Italian, and
on and on. My friend who lives there resides with an Irish girl and
an Italian girl, and she is Colombian herself...you could tell she
just loved always getting perspective on things from folks from
other countries, and “L’Auberge Espanole” mixes this so well that it
makes you want to go out and get the group house going right now.
There’s some good laughs, a taste of the
kinky stuff (this IS a foreign film, for chrissakes), some drama,
and even a good ending. But, I come out of the experience
remembering only the characters and--kind of like “Cheers” or “The
Simpsons” or any great TV show--that’s what makes me want to see
“L’Auberge Espanole” again. I wonder if they’ll make a sequel...
Rating: Opening Weekend
Comments? Drop me a line at
Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": This is
the highest rating a movie can receive. Reserved for movies that
exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development,
setting...or Salma Hayek. Not necessarily in that order.
"$X.XX Show": This price
changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently,
it is the $9.50 Show. While not technically perfect, this is a
movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.
"Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca",
but you'll have a great time watching. The $9.50 Show won't win any
Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see
"Matinee": An average movie
that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.
Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about
yourself. A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave
the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that
Lakers game last night?"
"Rental": This rating
indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your
friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one." Mostly forgettable, you
couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to
watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the
video store was out of copies of "Ronin." If you can, see this
movie for free. This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a
"Hard Vice": This rating is
the bottom of the barrel. A movie that only six other human beings
have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen. A Shannon
Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every
one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a
movie. Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or
"Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this
movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!
(Warning: strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard