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Watched this film on Netflix with Sam the other night.  It is a French film (which means subtitles) called “Prete-moi ta main.”  On Netflix it’s listed as “I Do: How to get Married and Stay Single” though when the movie starts they translate the title as “Faux Wedding.”  I don’t actually know what the French is translated literally, but I’m going with “Faux Wedding.”  The basic story is about a man (Luis) who is 43 and single.  He likes it this way.  However, his family of nearly all women wants to get him married off.  The reason given seems to be that they are sick of doing all of his chores for him.  After several horrible dates he schemes to have a faux wedding.  He wants to hire a woman to act like his fiancée and then leave him at the altar.  The idea is that he will then be so horribly depressed that his family won’t mention marriage to him again.  He finds a woman named Emmanuelle who is the kid sister of a co-worker (Luis makes perfume).  As is often the case in romantic comedies there inevitably develops at least a surface-level interest.

I think this movie worked really well to kind of show how family sometimes is counter-productive when it comes to personal fulfillment.  On the other side of the coin though it can serve to give us that push we need to further ourselves, even if it’s in spite of their specific ideas.  It also goes on to examine how people aren’t always what they seem.  Age, occupation, even lifestyle don’t always give you a full picture of what’s going on.  Through this movie I think we get to see quite a change in Luis as well as a few different spotlights cast on Emma showing her as more than just a young love interest.  There’s also a comfortable little side story about Luis’ career which occasionally works itself into the main plot.  In so many ways I really don’t feel like I’m doing a good job describing the various themes of the movie but it certainly stuck out as something more than “just another romantic comedy.”

I could appreciate Luis having the pressure to try and please his family.  I more than cringed at a particular part when he was “made” to choose between his family and his love interest.  It’s not easy to get passed something like that.  Finding ways to show and appreciate your own personal ticks and habits and your own life while also finding room for this other person is something this movie is great about showing off.  So many mistakes are made which make this one a little more realistic too.  It’s not one of those films where by the last fifteen minutes every character has magically healed his or her flaws.  I liked that aspect of it. 

Another thing which is a bit more of a run-of-the-mill idea actually is this idea that there are loves we can’t get over yet don’t want to confess or get beyond.  So many forms of entertainment have touched on this idea but this one stuck out to me.  I won’t lie that since it was a bit of an out of the ordinary film for me it probably had some effect; but the themes were still the same.  Getting over an old girlfriend, admitting to yourself that you like someone who is nothing like her, fighting not only yourself but others as well (including the girl) is something that adds a lot of layers if people are willing to think about it a little instead of just watching it and hoping it’s handed to you. 

As hodge podge as this “review” is I would recommend it to anyone to at least give a glance.  I gave it 5/5 stars myself.

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December 2012

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