THE GILDED CAGE
THIS lovely, well- observed comedy has been a breakout hit in France, and is sure to delight audiences here as well. After 30 years of making ends meet in Paris, Portuguese emigre couple Maria ( Rita Blanco) and Jose ( Joaquim de Almeida) receive word the life they have always wanted awaits back home. There is just one hitch: both are such valued employees, their bosses would rather they stay right where there are. Writer- director Ruben Alves works through an ever- escalating series of complications in fi ne style, adding just the right touches of levity and longing as needed. A vast array of colourful support players serve as welcome distractions when proceedings stray towards the predictable. Good stuff.