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This multicultural comedy captures the chaos and excitement of being young.
All Critics (92)
| Top Critics (33)
| Fresh (70)
| Rotten (22)
| DVD (5)
Yet another example of writer/director Klapisch's way of finding fresh new insights within the most mundane of circumstances.
A film whose limitations are the same as its appeal: It's a bauble.
It features four of the most erotically and emotionally delectable female performances I have seen in one film this year.
Much of the charm of this film is in its understanding of the great fluidity of romantic relationships -- especially before people decide to settle down.
As he did in When the Cat's Away, Klapisch demonstrates an understanding for the way young people caught between the demands of adulthood and their lingering adolescence behave.
It's hard to complain about a film that combines Paris and the city in the world that is most like it.
French filmmaker Cedric Klapisch takes the old clichés of culture clash, college roommate chaos, and a young adult's education outside the confines of the classroom and turns it into vision of the then-new European Union as communal household.
fun, irresistibly charming and very genuinely felt
A Big Mac with a mineral water chaser.
[Its] cheery characters are ultimately stuck wending their way through wackily contrived scenarios fit for a sitcom.
L'auberge espagnole or The Spanish apartment is a lovable, cozy mess just like its architectural setting.
...not a difficult movie to criticize, [but] a hard movie not to like.
It's unfortunate that this film's marketing outside of Europe relied so much on Audrey Tautou, post-Amélie--be advised, she's barely in the movie. What you will find here, however, is light Linklater-ish fare: a deceptively simple story about a summer abroad and all the discovery and temptations and challenges that come with it. It works largely in types, but the characters are memorable and the style (both narrative and visual) aren't the same old cookie-cutter stuff. Quite enjoyable, in all.
A lovely, funny and touching film about friendship and love that will please even more those who know what it is like to live abroad, and it portrays with a charming sincerity the insecurities and fears of youth through a group of characters that we easily relate to and care about.
French student's coming-of-age story. Reminded me of a European version of Haruki Murakami's "Norwegian Wood", but I found the events in this one a little more prosaic / less magical.
At first sight, this film is a lively and engaging comedy, particularly for anybody familiar with the world of Erasmus students. Klapisch has undoubtedly succeeded in capturing the atmosphere of the multi-national student squat, creating an immediately interesting cultural crossroads, and of course a premise for lots of stereotyped jokes. And what trendier place for it all to take place than Barcelona ? The film's sparky characterisation (particularly Wendy zi English and her 'geezer' of a brother) proves that Klapish has observed intently the lifestyle and behaviour of today's European student travelers.
However, this does not hide a handful of gaping holes in the plot, which are easily noticeable on a second viewing of the film.
L'auberge espagnole falls arms flailing into the voice-over trap: drastic over-use throughout. Whether Klapisch intended to give a bird's eye view of the action, or simply to speed up the pace of the film at times, the result of too much voice-over is that Xavier's character loses its authenticity.
Romain Duris's acting is wooden - particularly with so many beautiful females around. As for Judith Godreche, she plays a non-starter of a part. Her character has no proper relationship with either of her men.
Klapish has paid attention to some nice little details. A quick shot of a sandal's foot on a marble staircase, William the English lad's upturned collar, and a TV clip of the Catalan sport of human tower-building, for example.
However these little gems cannot hide flagrant over-editing which stagger the flow of the film and dissolve any feeling of resolution at the end. The frantic city running scene à la 007 is ridiculous: why ALL the house mates have to return so suddenly remains a mystery.
Some say this film makes political reference to the leading European powers. I think that it just wants to be a light entertaining comedy: it nearly fails even to be that !
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