User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 501 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 26 out of 501
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  1. Mar 26, 2012
    4
    This movie was uninteresting. Woody Allen's other works are far superior to this mindless attempt of a movie. The movie seems creative, but lacks so much. It was just plain boring. So many great actors gone to waste except for Wilson who is already a big pile of waste. My first impressions appeared to be correct.
  2. Dec 11, 2011
    5
    Although I WANTED to like this, and I agree with others that the long list of expatriate artists that are "visited" were intriguing, the script just felt so forced and high-fallootin' in an effort to be "intellectual" that I never fell for the spell Allen wanted me to go under. Allen also uses Olsen Wilson as his surrogate "puppet", seemingly forcing him to use Allen's own rhythms,Although I WANTED to like this, and I agree with others that the long list of expatriate artists that are "visited" were intriguing, the script just felt so forced and high-fallootin' in an effort to be "intellectual" that I never fell for the spell Allen wanted me to go under. Allen also uses Olsen Wilson as his surrogate "puppet", seemingly forcing him to use Allen's own rhythms, phrasings, and speech patterns throughout his entire performance. Although I enjoyed the nicely detailed art direction and Marion Cotillard is always interesting, overall, the film is flat, redundant, and surprisingly, only sporadically "funny". Not worthy of the early Oscar buzz that it was once receiving which has now (rightfully) waned. Expand
  3. CMC
    Jul 3, 2011
    4
    If you really like most all Woody Allen films, you will probably like this one. Considered as breezy entertainment, it is as you might expect better than most Hollywood fare, but that bar is not too high. Owen Wilson becomes boring as he is given few good lines, portraying a perpetually confused and boring person, and the occasional Woody Allen quip seems out of character for the goy TexasIf you really like most all Woody Allen films, you will probably like this one. Considered as breezy entertainment, it is as you might expect better than most Hollywood fare, but that bar is not too high. Owen Wilson becomes boring as he is given few good lines, portraying a perpetually confused and boring person, and the occasional Woody Allen quip seems out of character for the goy Texas boy. Adrian Brody as Dali is by far the best, and I suspect it is because he did an improv on his role and everyone liked it, while the others are too submissive to Alen's uninspired direction. Perhaps the most disappointing feature is how un-emotive Paris is; how hard is it to miss when combining Paris and nostalgia? A big problem is that even the "real" characters are such extreme caricatures, you just can get too interested. I became bored by Allen's latest sleepwalking exercise. Expand
  4. Jul 8, 2011
    4
    I thought I was going to love this movie, but I didn't. 45 minutes into it I was looking at the clock, pretty bored & trying to remember how many minutes long it was. The acting seemed forced, predictable & dull. Although the potential for a great movie was all right there, something big was missing & it flat lined.
  5. Oct 12, 2011
    4
    Midnight in Paris is two films wrapped up into one and its all the worse for it. The scenes set in 1920's Paris with Owen Wilson's Gil interacting with famous writers, painters and artists such as Ernest Hemingway and Salvador Dali, are incredibly electric and fun (if not funny) but its juxtaposed with a thoroughly boring modern day tale of nostalgia vs looking to the future which justMidnight in Paris is two films wrapped up into one and its all the worse for it. The scenes set in 1920's Paris with Owen Wilson's Gil interacting with famous writers, painters and artists such as Ernest Hemingway and Salvador Dali, are incredibly electric and fun (if not funny) but its juxtaposed with a thoroughly boring modern day tale of nostalgia vs looking to the future which just lets the whole film down. Gil only seems to be having fun when in the past which is funny because the moments in the past are the only fun ones in the movie. Rachel Mcadams who is usually a treat seems to be itching for something else to do, with her not seemingly understanding her character well enough. Finally the film doesn't seem to know where its heading with it seeming to know it wants to critique something but then changing its mind on what it wants to critique. It would be a much more rounded film if the narrative wasn't split so much and if Allen knew what he wanted to say as a director or as this film seems to suggest, an artist. Expand
  6. Jun 20, 2011
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Entertaining, nicely written story that is unfortunately miscast with Owen Wilson. He continues to play the nitwit and gets handsomely rewarded for it. Go figure. We gave it a C+ but it would have gotten a much higher grade with the proper lead. The female lead was so-so as well but the ensemble cast was excellent. Expand
  7. Jun 20, 2011
    4
    Not nearly as good as his last films (Vicky.., Whatever Works, Cassandra's Dream, Match Point...). I chuckled a couple times as the script contains Woody's usual intelligent humor, which keeps his fans coming back for more. However, the plot is too simple and I was glad when it was over. Oh, and Kathy Bates gave her worst performance ever -- wooden. The lead, Owen Wilson gave a B+Not nearly as good as his last films (Vicky.., Whatever Works, Cassandra's Dream, Match Point...). I chuckled a couple times as the script contains Woody's usual intelligent humor, which keeps his fans coming back for more. However, the plot is too simple and I was glad when it was over. Oh, and Kathy Bates gave her worst performance ever -- wooden. The lead, Owen Wilson gave a B+ performance. Several curvaceous young female characters. Expand
  8. Jul 1, 2011
    4
    I agree that the film is beautiful, but Woody Allen has not outgrown the same old tired sexual politics that are evident in his films from the 70s!! For example, the main character is encouraged to get with the enlightened French romantic ways when he is told that a man may love 2 women for their different attributes, HOWEVER, the women in the film who have more than one love interest areI agree that the film is beautiful, but Woody Allen has not outgrown the same old tired sexual politics that are evident in his films from the 70s!! For example, the main character is encouraged to get with the enlightened French romantic ways when he is told that a man may love 2 women for their different attributes, HOWEVER, the women in the film who have more than one love interest are conveyed in a negative light (the unlikeable fiance that has an affair with the pedantic guy or the woman that has ultimately unsatisfying relationships with multiple men). Woody â Expand
  9. Dec 15, 2011
    4
    Once in a while Woody Allen revives his impulse for lo-fi fantastical, while still satirizing the discontents of the bourgeoisie. Owen Wilson is one of the better conduits for the Allen-persona since itâ
  10. Dec 26, 2011
    5
    If one was mixing a movie **** the recipe for this one would be one part insufferable New York liberal intellectualism, one part Woody Allen semi-autobiographical self-rationalization, and one part beautifully filmed breezy Parisian travelogue with a refreshing plot twist. In short, it is standard Woody Allen fare. In Midnight in Paris, we find self-doubting and discontented liberalIf one was mixing a movie **** the recipe for this one would be one part insufferable New York liberal intellectualism, one part Woody Allen semi-autobiographical self-rationalization, and one part beautifully filmed breezy Parisian travelogue with a refreshing plot twist. In short, it is standard Woody Allen fare. In Midnight in Paris, we find self-doubting and discontented liberal screenwriter Gil (a pseudo Woody Allen character portrayed by Owen Wilson) wandering the streets of Paris while beset by a shrewish fiancé (Rachel McAdams), her cartoonishly moronic conservative parents (Mimi Kennedy and Kurt Fuller), and the overbearing pseudo-intellectual Paul (Michael Sheen). If it all sounds familiar â Expand
  11. Mar 24, 2012
    5
    Midnight in Paris has a interesting story but as the movie goes on you begin looking at the screen and see it is still Owen Wilson who acts the same in every movie. parts are interesting and parts are not so much. you leave with a feeling of what just happened and not quite in a good way.
  12. Nov 30, 2013
    6
    Midnight in Paris is a nice little wish fulfillment flick from Woody Allen. The film is mildly funny, mildly insightful and mildly romantic. So... Very mild, then. It is stuffed with good-natured charm, though. Not one of Allen's best but still fun.
  13. Mar 26, 2012
    6
    With Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen attempts to whip you off on a rip-roaring adventure through the very best of 20th Century art and literature. At some points, he succeeds. 1920s Paris is beautifully re-created, and the gradual introduction of every artist and writer you can imagine sharing a warmly-lit, smokey cafe in 1920s Paris is rather fun. Allen has attracted some real talent toWith Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen attempts to whip you off on a rip-roaring adventure through the very best of 20th Century art and literature. At some points, he succeeds. 1920s Paris is beautifully re-created, and the gradual introduction of every artist and writer you can imagine sharing a warmly-lit, smokey cafe in 1920s Paris is rather fun. Allen has attracted some real talent to play these icons, with Corey Stoll's grouchy Hemingway and Adrien Brody's brilliantly batty Dali being particular highlights. Concerning the "real people" in the film, Owen Wilson gives a staggeringly good performance as struggling writer Gil Pender, proving he can handle more serious roles as well as the comic ones (though there is still ample opportunity for him to wisecrack as only someone with his boyish charm can). Marion Cotillard also impresses as Adriana, a 1920s resident, a muse of Picasso (Marcial Di Fonzo Bo) and the woman who captures Gil's heart. Rachel McAdams is far less impressive playing Inez, Gil's spoilt, stroppy and selfish wife - she's just plain irritating and you really can't wait until Gil escapes her clutches. Michael Sheen is good as always, but plays a colossal a-hole, Paul Bates, a self-important, faux-intellectual art lecturer, and like with Inez, you can't wait to leave him behind. Though the premise of the film, of a man who is displaced in time and finds new artistic inspiration from a bygone era, is a thoroughly interesting one, the way in which Allen guides his story does not always work. The plot plods excruciatingly for the first 20 minutes or so - rather than moving the story along, it feels as though you're reading a tacky tourism brochure over Allen's shoulder. Things do improve once Gil first arrives in the 1920s, but it does at times feel like Allen is showing off how well-read and art-savvy he is. As sometimes happens with his films, his slightly patronising and arrogant tone can grate. Yes, Woody Allen is a talented screenwriter, and a competent director, but he can also be rather irritating in his tendency to want to shove his intellectualism down your throat. Midnight in Paris does work as a film, and has some nice ideas, performances and a good screenplay. If you're already a fan of Mr Allen's work, then I'm sure you'll love it. If not, then it likely won't convert you, and the film is a bit self-absorbed at times. It's the third Woody Allen film I've seen, and I'm still not certain I can see what all the fuss is about. Expand
  14. Jun 4, 2011
    6
    Woody Allen's best work is clearly behind him as he turns out one disappointment after another. It is Owen Wilson's portrayal of Gil, more than Allen's writing or directing, that is what shines in this film. Marion Cotillard and Kathy Bates also deliver stellar performances. Allen reverts to cheap political stereotypes to define Rachel McAdams and her family and relies on the stereotypingWoody Allen's best work is clearly behind him as he turns out one disappointment after another. It is Owen Wilson's portrayal of Gil, more than Allen's writing or directing, that is what shines in this film. Marion Cotillard and Kathy Bates also deliver stellar performances. Allen reverts to cheap political stereotypes to define Rachel McAdams and her family and relies on the stereotyping rather than writing to define and give dimension to these characters. McAdams character is pointless and while she seems to be doing all she can with the character, there's just not much to work with. Michael Sheen, like Owen Wilson, delivers a fine performance. He's amusing and irritating at the same time. Rather than defining him by throwing a stereotype on him, his character's behavior is what defines him, as it should.

    As another said, Allen treats the audience like idiots. Where he once made points using a scalpel, he now uses an axe. The point of our glorifying the past is obvious, but Allen no longer seems able to master his once masterful use of subtlety. Where Allen still shines is in his ability to capture the beauty of the city. The shots of Paris were lovely and make you truly understand why Wilson's character so loves the city. It's hard not to love it when it is portrayed so beautifully.
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  15. Dec 23, 2011
    6
    Midnight in Paris is fluffy and sweet, but like cotton candy, it is airy and somewhat lacking in substance. However, Owen Wilson's Gil is an original creation and actually outstrips all of Allen's previous incarnations in all his other films. This is an new kind of character playing the Woody Allen persona. He's not a loser; he's rich and confident. He doesn't get cast aside by the womanMidnight in Paris is fluffy and sweet, but like cotton candy, it is airy and somewhat lacking in substance. However, Owen Wilson's Gil is an original creation and actually outstrips all of Allen's previous incarnations in all his other films. This is an new kind of character playing the Woody Allen persona. He's not a loser; he's rich and confident. He doesn't get cast aside by the woman he adores because she left him for someone who looks suspiciously like Warren Beatty; he's engaged to be married to the woman he loves, and he's on holiday in Paris, while his rich future in-laws go on a shopping spree to pay for the perfect wedding. The endearing Brooklyn accent is gone because it has been replaced by a hint of a Texan drawl. Gil is blond, waspy, and eccentrically handsome. No schlemiel this intelligent and worldly young man who has his life already measured out in coffee spoons--silver coffee spoons, probably owned by his future father-in-law's company. Like the conventional Woody persona, he's a writer. And like the real Woody Allen, he wants to write a novel, and all his Hollywood screenplays pale in comparison to this one overriding ambition. But the novel eludes him. Dissatisfied with the present and vaguely aware that his materialistic, Republican fiancee may not be the right woman for him, he welcomes the opportunity to become a time traveler. Time travel movies always have severe logic problems, but it is easier to resolve the logic if you only go back in time for the odd evening here and there. Gil goes back to the 1920's, the era he longs for. The real Woody Allen longs for the 1940's, his childhood years. The rather basic theme is that we always long for some Golden Age in the past, and if we go back to that age, we'll find those people longing for something previous to their era. The present is too mundane for those who are actually experiencing it. They yearn for a lost paradise, a perfection that they sense must have existed somewhere else and has somehow eluded them; therefore, it must have been in the past. It's a pleasant film although the forays into the past are not the most authentic period pieces. A mustache for Adrien Brody does not fool the viewer into believing he is really Salvador Dali. It looks a bit like a costume party. The ending is vague and doesn't resolve anything; it only encourages us to dream, nay, to hallucinate about the past. Expand
  16. Apr 28, 2012
    6
    not an avid film watcher, so can't identify much of any tropes/anti-tropes and I'm really not that critical, I tend to enjoy most films. but essentially the film expounds upon a basic proverb I'm sure we all know, "the grass is always greener on the other side", set in Paris. To me that's not a very interesting premise, though we are all guilty of falling into the "golden age thinking"not an avid film watcher, so can't identify much of any tropes/anti-tropes and I'm really not that critical, I tend to enjoy most films. but essentially the film expounds upon a basic proverb I'm sure we all know, "the grass is always greener on the other side", set in Paris. To me that's not a very interesting premise, though we are all guilty of falling into the "golden age thinking" portrayed in the film to one degree or another. I don't find the old city of Paris attractive, so the setting appealed to me little, but if you're a hapless maybe-francophile, you might enjoy it However, the main highlight of this film was the historical figures portrayed. As a writer, the main character interacts primarily with writers, artists and musicians of the past. As an art history enthusiast, I especially enjoyed the artist portrayals. Highlights include Jason Brody as Dali, Corey Stoll as Hemingway and Adrien de Van as Luis Bunuel. I thought all of these characters were portrayed accurately enough to not anger those who are familiar with them, but with enough wit and satire to appeal to the non-familiar. But, if you're a fan of surrealism the film might irritate you a tad. Dali is implied to be the de facto leader of the Parisian surrealists (the three in the film being Dali, Bunuel and Man Ray) rather than the indisputable ideological center of the surrealist movement, Andre Breton. I think this was a really missed opportunity as well, since Breton was a passionate socialist, this would have played nicely with the conflict between the main character and his fiance's father (who calls him a communist and tells him to go see Trotsky at one point), though of course it would seem the main character is naught but an average American liberal. But for all Woody Allen gets wrong about the surrealists, the joke about Bunuel's The Exterminating Angel will have you roaring if you're familiar with it. And then there's also the slight implication of Picasso (and by extension, cubism) as avant-garde, the pinnacle of this ridiculous idea being Gertrude Stein dismissing one of Picasso's paintings as "petite bourgeois". But at the end, the characters remain almost pathetically naive and sincere, and I never became attached to Owen Wilson's character, but I suppose I did see elements of an older personal self in him. I've seen this described as Woody Allen's Lost in Translation, which it is certainly not other than the theme of doomed romance. The main characters develop little other than their relationship and Gil remains as frustratingly boring as the beginning. But the historical figures make this definitely worth seeing Expand
  17. Jul 9, 2014
    6
    I could see where Woody wanted to go with this movie and he had good intentions. Unfortunately a plot that had potential fell apart due to poor casting, uninspired performances and at time extremely insulting portrayals of famous artists of the past. Owen Wilson - who plays Gil- a successful but unsatisfied screenwriter is terrible in this role. It felt like he was being forced intoI could see where Woody wanted to go with this movie and he had good intentions. Unfortunately a plot that had potential fell apart due to poor casting, uninspired performances and at time extremely insulting portrayals of famous artists of the past. Owen Wilson - who plays Gil- a successful but unsatisfied screenwriter is terrible in this role. It felt like he was being forced into this mold of Woody Allen that he couldn't convincingly emulate. This "Zoolander" and "Wedding Crashers" star does not make a believable nerdy, awkward writer with a shuffling gait! He doesn't have the range of facial expression necessary to draw us in to believing his character's wonderment and excitement upon meeting some historical greats. Rachael McAdams seems to be channeling a slightly less **** "Mean Girls" persona but I swear at times it sounded like I was listening to her doing a reading for the role. Towards the end when her and Owen have a confrontation it all seems contrived and unconvincing. The portrayals of famous artists were extremely one dimensional- I was especially insulted by the way Salvador Dali was portrayed. Either Woody should have gone more over the top which these caricatures in a Mel Brooks sort of way or he should have idealized them in the way Owen's character would have seen them. Marion Cottiard who gave an excellent performance in La Vie en Rose is pretty but ineffectual. Her character's emotional range is minimal and the chemistry b/t her and Owen is nonexistent. That being said - I love the idea of the movie- nostalgia for a bygone era is more exciting in one's mind than for the people who lived through it. It was such a disappointment that the acting and at times the writing couldn't live up to the story's potential. Expand
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 40
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 40
  3. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Jun 11, 2011
    63
    A hymn to that beautiful city, is among his least consequential efforts. It's attractive and easy to slip into, but he didn't put enough thought into the design, and it soon falls apart.
  2. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jun 10, 2011
    75
    A fanciful French cousin to Allen's "Zelig" and "The Purple Rose of Cairo," yet the fulfilled wish for a better life is high-concept absurdity without high-anxiety guffaws.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jun 10, 2011
    88
    A lovely jaunt that ends up becoming one of Allen's most enjoyable films, start-to-finish, in years.