Tuesday, July 31, 2007

A Few Days in September

Early in September 2001 Elliot (Nick Nolte) an American spy, who hasn't been seen for awhile, wants to meet with Orlando, his French daughter, and David, his American step son. He somehow convinces Irene (Juliette Binoche) a French spy and ex-colleague to get the kids (in their early 20s) to the meet in a seedy Paris Hotel. Orlando who was abandoned by her dad when she was ten comes armed with a gun and a scowl. David who is ignorant of his step father's earlier life arrives like an innocent, happy tourist on holiday. William, a neurotic and psychopathic assassin out to kill Elliot turns up and scares Elliot off.

After the failure of the first meet, a second meet is set up in Venice by some banker types (with Arab connections) who have been employing Elliot on the side for his inside info. While kicking their heels in Venice Irene, Orlando and David discuss the differences between the US and the rest of the world (i.e. France) and generally get to know each other.

The ever postponed meeting with Elliot, Elliot's info and the rapidly approaching 11th are the MacGuffins that this film hangs on. The innocent All-American David in close confines with two sexy French women, his sulky younger step sister and the sophisticated, older but still sexy, Irene and on the run from a ruthless, mad assassin provides plenty scope for sexual tension. The phone calls from the poetry reading assassin to his shrink gives some comic relief. The camera work is stylish in two of the most photogenic cities in the world. But I left the film feeling that it had so much potential ... wasted. Plenty of style, but no substance. Such a pity, it could have been a great film.

Anne scanned the credits to see if Irene's glasses and her turtle would get their own listings.

Ian's rating: 2/5
Anne's rating: 3/5

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