In a very funny display of French comedy, the movie Lost in Paris shines with a delightful story of unavoidable romance. The film is drenched in Marcel Marceau’s mime comedy, Jerry Lewis’s wit and a bit of Charlie Chaplin collectively performed by a delightful cast.
Living in a blizzard dominated valley in Canada, Fiona (Fiona Gordon) has yearned for a place that doesn’t need a shovel to get from her door to work. She dreams of going to visit her Aunt Martha (Emmanuelle Riva) who has just turned 88 and lives in Paris. One day while tending the local library the mailman drops off a letter from Aunt Martha that had been misplaced in a garbage can.
Martha has sent for Fiona to help her as the government wants to place her in a people’s home. Distraught, Fiona stuffs her backpack with all her needs and jumps on the first airplane to Paris. When she gets there however, he Aunt has disappeared. Not familiar with her surroundings and with no place to stay, she wanders around Paris getting caught up in some odd situations until she meets Dom (Dominique Abel) a homeless man.
Like the blind leading the blind, the two try to find out what happened to Aunt Martha. Dominique Abel and Fiona Gordon direct and star in their own screenplay that’s filled with pratfalls, mime humor and silliness. Actually the film has enough French guffaws to film two movies. It’s a fun romp around Paris, missing only Notre Dame Cathedral, with this tour of one of the brightest cities in the world.
Able and Gordon remind me of the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis films that have a lot of sight gags and meaningless humor. But what makes Lost in Paris much better is the way it’s all presented with every scene dropping a clue to something that will become important to the finale. It’s slapstick with a story of romance and wonder that never gets dull or repetitive. Gordon and Able have won numerous awards a many film festivals and their short film “Walking on the Wild Side” won the Jury Award at the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival in 2000.
Lost in Paris has not been rated by the MPAA, but does contain sum rude language and a scene of suggested sex. The film spools out in a combination of English and French with subtitles.
FINAL ANALYSIS: A very funny comedy with a ton of enjoyable sight gags.
Additional Film Information:
Cast: Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon, Emmanuelle Riva and Pierre Richard
Directed by: Dominique Abel and Fiona Gordon
Genre: Comedy, Romance, Foreign
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 1 hr. 24 min.
Release Date: July 14, 2017
Distributed by: Oscilloscope
Released in: French/English
EDITORS NOTE: Oscar nominee for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in Amour, Emmanuelle Riva died in Paris, France just months before the release of Lost in Paris. Her 89 credits read like a career filled with roles that many actors would envy. To mention a few beyond Amour (2012) would take this whole page, but most indie and foreign film lovers will remember Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959), Leon Morin Priest (1961), Thérèse (1962) and Bitter Fruit (1967).
The comments within this review are the critic’s expressed opinions.
Opening this week in theaters around the USA including:
Miami: Miami Beach Cinematheque, Bill Cosford Cinema
Broward: Cinema Paradiso – Hollywood, Savor Cinema-Fort Lauderdale
Palm Beach County: Living Room Theaters/Boca, Lake Worth Playhouse