February 20, 2004

'Parapluies' Is A Happy Word

Catherine Deneuve &
Melancholy and joyous simultaneously, a movie that just makes CC feel buoyant walking home from the theater is an apt thing to see as the weather begins to warm. We caught one of the last screenings for the week at Film Forum of Jacques Demy's the Umbrellas of Cherbourg or as the French have it, Les Parapluies de Cherbourg. Even the French word for umbrella makes CC grin -- parapluie, trying to say it aloud will make your day. But at the same time, when the fresh faced Catherine Deneuve looks into the camera, her face smeared with tears for her mechanic boyfriend off at the army, your heart can't help but break.

Although, CC will admit that not everyone in the theater seemed to be caught up in what seems like the story's obvious poignancy. CC and friend Stephanie ended up behind a group of enthusiastic girls who joyfully squirmed as the credits began but giggled mockingly as the melodrama unspooled. Is our generation too ironic, too meta now to appreciate with a straight face this operatic-style love story? We can understand it can be difficult to take a movie world seriously where the walls are electric green but how can you not be swept along by the strains of Michel Legrand's amazing score? Just hearing a few of the notes strung together is enough to bring a tear to CC's eye.

Posted by karen at February 20, 2004 8:04 AM