NZ Today - - ON FILM -

Di­rected by Peter Weir Touch­stone Pic­tures 1990

Ger­ard Depar­dieu, you are a Sex God. I don’t care that you are now a bit ro­tund and have re­nounced your French ci­ti­zen­ship. When you hit the big screen you are ev­ery woman’s dream. I would leave my hus­band (if I had one) for you. I would even move to Rus­sia for you. I am yours.

Right, back to re­al­ity. In Green Card, Ger­ard Depar­dieu (as Ge­orges Fauré) is at his ab­so­lute dreamy best. I bought this 1990 Romcom on DVD when I was at the Ware­house buy­ing the Frozen DVD for one of my daugh­ter’s friend’s birth­day (the same party where she broke her arm, please see Talk­back). Any­hooo, I spotted Green Card and thought, I re­mem­ber lov­ing that film and I cer­tainly love Ger­ard Depar­dieu, so I splashed out the $6.95 (a lot cheaper than Frozen, let me tell you!).

Well, my life hasn’t been the same since. Call me weird but any mo­ment I can squeeze in watch­ing ten min­utes of this film I do. While vac­u­um­ing, do­ing dishes, clean­ing the sink, it is on in the back­ground. It shows that ro­mance isn’t dead and even the most un­likely of types can find a com­mon bond and love.

Di­rec­tor and writer Peter Weir wrote the part specif­i­cally for Ger­ard Depar­dieu. It was as a ve­hi­cle for him to break into the English-speak­ing film world af­ter his suc­cess in the ti­tle role of French film, Cyrano de Berg­erac which I also re­view in this is­sue to keep the theme go­ing.

The ti­tle of the film ex­plains the premise. An Amer­i­can woman Bronte, (played by the stun­ning Andie MacDow­ell) who needs to be mar­ried to score the apart­ment of her dreams and a French “oaf ” who needs a green card par­take in a mar­riage of con­ve­nience, only to be­come sus­pects of the INS (Im­mi­gra­tion and Nat­u­ral­i­sa­tion Ser­vice).

Cue a forced time to­gether to prove to the INS that the mar­riage is gen­uine. They must find out ev­ery­thing about the other, the colour of each other’s tooth­brushes, their re­spec­tive heights and weights, even the name of her mois­turiser.

The two char­ac­ters are com­plete op­po­sites, which makes it so fun and play­ful. Bronte’s earnest, real boyfriend is of course a veg­e­tar­ian, to which the thor­oughly French Ge­orge asks “Why?” I love it!

It is pre­dictable but the fraught yet de­light­ful weekend Bronte and Ge­orge spend learn­ing about each other is a les­son in tol­er­ance and ap­pre­ci­at­ing people for what they are. I won’t give any more away if you haven’t seen it but even if you have, it is worth watch­ing again.

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