Sunday, January 20, 2013

2 Days in New York (2012) ***½

It’s no surprise to see Chris Rock appearing in a comedy, but it was a pleasant surprise to see him demonstrate an ability to turn down the comic frenzy and turn up the heart for an adult comedy.  “2 Days in New York” showcases some of the best acting I have seen from Rock.  It was also my introduction to Julie Delpy as not just an actor but also a director, and she availed herself pretty well.
Rock and Delpy play Mingus and Marion, a couple living in New York.  Both have kids from previous marriages, and they have a good relationship, with a nice little blended family.  This system gets stress-tested when Marion’s father (Albert Delpy, Julie’s actual father) and sister Rose visit, along with Rose’s boyfriend Manu, who happens to be an ex-boyfriend of Marion.  Between Marion’s dad refusing to shower, Manu buying pot in front of the kids, and Rose walking around the apartment naked, the visit is a bit too much for Mingus.  Meanwhile, Marion is trying to host a gallery exhibition of her photographs.
“2 Days in New York” is truly a comedy for adults.  The French characters are hilarious in the way characters in a Woody Allen movie are, and Mingus and Marion’s relationship is very adult and honest.  The film is actually a sequel to “2 Days in Paris,” which I haven’t seen.
Lots of movies explore the “True love conquers all” theme.  “2 Days in New York” skillfully explores the question of whether true love can survive the greatest challenge of all, the extended family.

3.5 stars out of 5

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