2 Days in New York (2012)

103.

★★★

Directed by: Julie Delpy
Written by: Julie Delpy, Alexia Landeau
Starring: Julie Delpy, Chris Rock and Albert Delpy

Moving to another city didn’t solve anything.

After 2 Days in Paris, Julie Delpy moves to New York, taking the same cast from her 2007 debut minus Adam Goldberg, plus Chris Rock. Minus the charm, subtlety, and likeable qualities of her character. Plus … Central Park.

Marion (Delpy) has moved in with a new boyfriend, Mingus (Rock), with Jack’s/her son, Lulu, and Mingus’ daughter from a previous marriage. While the couple have been able to comfortably mold their circumstances into a harmonious environment for the kids, the arrival of Marion’s family – her father, sister Rose, and Rose’s boyfriend, Manu – delivers the complete opposite.

While the focus on cultural differences drove the comedy and drama of 2 Days in Paris, 2 Days in New York gets tangled up in various concepts that lose their strength in the chaotic and wild strands of plot. Catching us up to speed by putting on a brief puppet show at the beginning of the film – explaining her childbirth, separation, and meeting with Mingus – Marion also explains her concern for her father  in light of her mother passing away. This tragedy, however, doesn’t get much mention later in the story. In addition to this, Marion’s fascinating conceptual art piece, Mingus’ opportunity to interview his idol Barack Obama, and Rose’s relationship with Manu, never fully develop in the film’s plot, which constantly gets distracted by large flights of exaggeration and confusing, unconvincing exhibits of behavior.

As a farce, 2 Days in New York does a great job. The film isn’t afraid to be foolish and does so with confidence and French flair. But when it comes to comparing the sequel to its original, Paris was a much better place to stay.

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