Great acting, great story , a real MUST-SEE10/10
I saw this great film 4 times and would have watched more often if my local cinema would not have finished showing it after 3 weeks already. I loved the acting, the mood, the music, the scenes of Paris. I "fell in love" with Clemence Poesy (real name Guichard, Poesy is her mother), a star in 3 Harry Potters, In Bruges and much more. This film was shot between October and December 2011, so it took 2 years for a wide release. First they filmed in Paris, then St Malo (Mr Morgan has a summer house there), then the interiors in Brussels and Cologne, as it's mainly a German production, in English and a bit of French. Matthew Morgan is a retired American professor of philosophy, living alone in St.Germain, Paris, ever since his wife died 3 years, 2 months and a few days ago, when he meets the young Pauline, a modern dance teacher, on a bus and then again. Her father also died (the director dedicated this film to the memory of her own father who also died). She seems to be in search for a father figure and starts helping Matthew. We don't get much or anything to know about her own problems. Matthew tried to kill himself, and Pauline livens up his life. He had a friend whom he took to expensive dinners but when she moves out of Paris he became even more lonely and Pauline fills that gap nicely and becomes his last love but purely platonic. After his second suicide attempt she visits him in the hospital and here also his son and daughter arrive, thinking Pauine will be their new stepmother or is a bimbo. It turns out the relationship between father and his son and daughter is far from good. They quarrel about their mother who wanted to die in Paris but they feel he took her way from them. Miles Morgan ,the son, plays just one face here all the time, an angry one. Karen, the daughter, has also an angry role and quickly returns to the USA when there are family problems back home. Pauline is caught in between. The film then becomes more or less 2 stories in one, about her and Mr Morgan and Mr Morgan and his children. The ending (which of course I don't reveal here) leaves you wondering about a number of things, most of all how much time there was between the last scene and the penultimate one. In general there's some guessing to do here and gaps to fill by yourself, but that's fine as the best films always leave room for own interpretations. The acting is superb, by Micheal Caine (who might get an Oscar nomination) but mostly by Clemence Poesy who is a real kindhearted spirit, and the "crack in Mr Morgan's life, that lets the light in". Mr Morgan says she does not have a mean bone in her body and Miles thinks she lights up the room with her presence. So Pauline is a dance teacher. Right NOW Clemence Poesy stars on stage for 2 months in a theatre in Paris in a play called "I always dance" (a war story monologue) and the French reviews are mainly glorious, so it shows she has great acting talents. Educated bilingually she lives a lot in London and New York and is also a great fashion model, on the cover of many magazines. A great film about love and friendship and family ties, albeit melancholic and with not a lot to laugh, but of a sort I wish would never end and Paris looks lovely. The director manages to give us neither too much nor too little emotion and avoids big cliches and banalities. I can't wait for the DVD (January 2014).