The new Sofia Coppola film is right around the corner, but she's not only the only that has been busy as Eleanor Coppola's Paris Can Wait is also on its way and it screened at this year's Edinburgh Film Festival.

The film boasts an impressive lead cast, featuring Diane Lane, Alec Baldwin, and Arnuard Viard, but even they can't save this film - no matter how good they may be. Paris Can Wait's biggest problem is that it's just boring. The film follows Lane's Anne as she travels the South of France to Paris with the associate of her husband - Michael (Baldwin), a big movie producer - Jacques (Viard). It's a simple concept and it's fascinating at first but quickly loses steam when the novelty of the premise is exhausted within the first half hour. From there onwards, it's just dull.

This is simply due to the fact that the dialogue is very stilted but we also just do not care for these characters. We learn nothing other than a few details about Anne and Jacques throughout the entire film, surprising given that they're stuck together for a number of days doing nothing but getting to know one another. There's no nuance and a lack of any real depth to these contrived, bland folk - and the irritatingly cartoonish nature of Jacques. We follow them for 90-something minutes as they travel and sample foods and wine and talk and it's such a drag. Towards the former half of the film, there is enjoyment to be had with Paris Can Wait as there is something sweet about the situation but it wears thin when we realise we're not getting anywhere in learning about these characters and investing in this story when the film becomes awfully repetitive: the pair drive; go off route for one reason or another; eat foods as Jacques bangs on about his love for cuisine; repeat - for 90 minutes!

The performances are certainly good. Alec Baldwin appears in the first scene and disappears for the rest of the film so don't go in expecting much of him, despite the marketing heavily pushing his involvement and role in the film. Viard is fine, he gives a competent performance that is by no means bad but also not awful; the character of Jacques is frustratingly annoying, often coming off as a cartoon of sorts but never really feeling like a genuine person. However, it's the always effervescent Diane Lane that is the standout. Her performance and mere charismatic presence keep this from completely falling apart but this film does not deserve her and she is far more talented than this. But, there's a warmth and heart that she brings that is very welcomed and necessary for the film. Coppola's direction is also fine too. It's a nice looking film that tells its story concisely; it's just a shame that the story wears thin and becomes repetitive and bland and that the characters aren't strong enough to sell this film with the much-needed conviction it so sorely lacks.

VERDICT:
You can keep waiting for Paris Can Wait because, quite frankly, it's a bore.

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Awais Irfan
Founder of Oasis Awais, and avid lover of life, Awais Irfan's love of writing and film is unequivocal. Ever since he was a little kid, he has loved the cinematic experience; so much so, he is studying Film Production in Glasgow and hopes to be the next "big thing" in directing.

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