Film Review: “Paris Can Wait” (2016) ★★★★

There are a few things you gotta do before you start watching Eleanor Coppola‘s marvelous movie. You need to let your mind be free from the daily routine, pretend that you are an ageless being, allow your mind to be a part of something special, be ready to fall in love with life, and more importantly, don’t hurry to Paris because – Paris Can Wait, but the enjoyment of life around you – won’t.

Anne (Diane Lane) and Michael (Alec Baldwin) are married for twenty years. He works in the film industry and does not have much time to spend with his wife. But he is genuinely in love with her. On their trip to Budapest, an urgent matter comes, making Michael to leave, but he asks Anna to go Paris instead, accompanied by his business companion and a Frenchman, Jacques (Arnaud Viard), who knows everything about delicious food, wines, women, and being a real gentleman. From the moment on when Anna gets into his car, she might not know then, but by the end of her trip to Paris, she will be renewed refreshed and learn about happiness and the beauty of life more than she ever knew before….

There is a special set of mind that is required to preview Paris Can Wait. Jacques is a very rich, genuine, and a very simple man who has only one expectation from everything – it all can wait; the problem can wait, even Paris with its gorgeous look can wait. But the only thing which can’t be postponed under any circumstances is an opportunity to cherish a moment of joy that might not be there when you’re occupied by other things.

Those things are: a broken car in the middle of nowhere but with breathtaking scenery that you could miss, if not for the same broken car. Anna has a whole different world. She is an American. She is used to a fast-paced life. But she has a catchy eye. During her trip, she always carries her best friend – small and handy photo camera. She takes a picture of everything: food, cars, wine and even a photo of her sleeping husband. She has a talent but does not want to reveal it to the world. Did she know that she had an attractive look? For sure she did, but after seeing her own picture taken by Jacques with her own camera, she changes significantly.

That moment was one of those when Anne realizes today or tomorrow won’t go anywhere. But the opportunity to enjoy Jacques’ exquisite taste of food, of life, and his attitude might be something that cannot be replaced by any other wasted minute. What I liked most about Anne and Jacques’ trip is that it was not one of those road trips where the two fall for each other and quickly run to find a nearby hotel. Both of them act like adults, which they are. They enjoy each other’s companies. Both of them learn something new. But it’s Anne who is like a child who, within one day, explores more than she could have imagined.

To conclude, Coppola’s Paris Can Wait is an adorable and charming movie about everything you can’t touch, but can feel. It’s about being able to see the unseen; it’s about withdrawing from a safe and comfort zone to the unknown but full of wonderful surprises in the future. It’s about looking at seemingly major problems through it. The concept here is very simple and straightforward: don’t rush, do not hurry. Stop running and take a walk. Life is amazing. Take it easy. You have enough time to live before you get too old but never old enough. You have many years ahead of you. The time is now. All can wait. Even Paris. But not the wonder of your eyes, like the Enigma machine, with the right code – you can track down the required signal to find a path to the unthinkable and the breathtaking. And thanks to Paris Can Wait and to Eleanor Coppola – I finally was able to realize that. You will as well….


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