On Tuesday I met Mr Fantapants in the city after work to go to a Hopscotch Secret Screening. We had no idea which movie we were seeing (cos it’s a sekrit, duh), but since the last one of these we went to turned out to be The Kids Are All Right, I was willing to take the risk.1
The movie turned out to be Heartbreaker, starring Vanessa Paradis (aka Mrs Johnny Depp) and Romain Duris. The premise is that Duris is a sort of lothario confidence trickster. He's paid to get women who are in unhappy relationships to fall in love with him and leave their despicable boyfriend/lover/husband. Paradis is days away from marrying a man2 who seems perfect: loving, kind, generous (and rich, obvs), but who, for some unknown reason, her dad hates.3 He hires Duris to break up the relationship before the wedding, which is being held in Monaco (cue exclusive-designer-shops-and-stunning-beachside-hotels montage). The rest is romantic comedy history.
Heartbreaker won't win any awards for originality, plot or scipt, but it was light and sweet and had some nice moments. Duris and Paradis make a cute, if scrawny,4 couple, and even though you could see the ending coming before the opening credits had finished, it was fun. This movie definitely seemed to be tailored for a rather specific audience (i.e. thirty-something women, their friends, mums and boyfriends who couldn’t get out of it), and when the Dirty Dancing sequence started there was literally clapping and ooh-ing and aah-ing around the theatre. I can’t help speculating that within two years there’ll be an American remake, starring Drew Barrymore and [insert 30-something thinking-woman’s-crumpet here].5
After the movie we went in search of dinner and discovered that Cellarbar (less glamorous sibling of Grossi Florentino) is not impossible to get a table at on a weeknight. I had a deliciously acidic spaghetti with preserved artichokes and olives; Mr F went for the superrich gnochhi gorganzola. Afterwards we took a leisurely stroll past The Paperback Bookshop6 where I snaffled up a copy of Dash and Lily's Book of Dares.
All around, a pretty perfect night out.
1 Plus, I subscribe to my dad's motto in life: If it's free, take two.
2 Played by the lovely Andrew Lincoln, for any This Life and Teachers fans
3 No coincidence that he’s a Brit, eh?
4 Seriously scrawny. I know Vanessa’s always been a wee fragile-bird of a thing, but I spent the whole film wishing I could pass her a sandwich, and Romain is similarly not-at-all-meaty (but very buff, as we saw in a number of shirt-off opportunities).
5 Although if they’re going for a Duris looky-likey it might be Russell Brand…shudder.
6 Which not only has a small-but-comprehensive YA section but also gives Victorian Writers Centre members 10% off - score and double score!