Paper Heart

"Excellent"

Paper Heart Review


An ingenious blending of rom-com and doc, this charming film worms its way under our skin from the start, keeping us laughing as it explores love and relationships from a strikingly original angle.

Performance artist Charlyne Yi and her friend Nick (Johnson) decide to make a documentary examining why Charlyne doesn't believe she's capable of falling in love. Nick follows her around the country talking to people about relationships. And he also photographs her regular life, during which she meets the actor Michael Cera at a party and starts a tentative relationship. Nick is a bit overexcited by this turn of events, and starts pushing them to fall in love so his film will have a great finale.

From the start we know this isn't a pure documentary, partly because an actor is playing Nick (everyone else plays themselves) but also because the film illustrates anecdotes and back-stories using Yi's distinctive hand-cut animation, which is reminiscent of Michel Gondry's effects work. Put together, it's a disarmingly effective way to look at the elusive nature of romance, as both fact and fiction offer insights that are funny, sweet and sometimes deranged.

Yi and Cera play themselves pretty much exactly like every other role they've had, which makes them believable and thoroughly charming. The chemistry between them is both shaky and engaging; we really root for them to find something deeper together, even as the camera crew pesters them beyond belief. But the offhanded filmmaking style really captures their personalities, packing the film with bone-dry wit as well as their love of very cool music.

When Nick starts to manipulate their relationship, the film takes a wonderfully surreal turn. There's a hilarious reverse shot of the crew filming a key moment as the couple's need for privacy clashes with Nick's need for footage.

Meanwhile, Charlyne is talking to people about their own experiences, including serious things like same-sex partnerships, why relationships break down and how to cope with a broken heart. The key point here is that everyone's definition of love is different, ranging from precocious children to wry seasoned couples.

And the climactic sequence in Paris adds a lovely twist to it all.



Paper Heart

Facts and Figures

Run time: 88 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 1st October 2009

Box Office USA: $1.1M

Box Office Worldwide: $1.3M

Budget: $1000 thousand

Distributed by: Overture Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 57%
Fresh: 62 Rotten: 46

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer: Sandra Murillo, Elise Salomon

Starring: as Himself, as Charlyne Yi, as Nicholas Jasenovec (as Jake M. Johnson), Gill Summers as Himself, as Himself, as Himself

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

An unusually realistic teen movie, this drama gets deep under the skin of its characters,...

Bleed for This Movie Review

Bleed for This Movie Review

This is such a ripping true story that it can't help but grab hold of...

Moana Movie Review

Moana Movie Review

In a clear echo of Frozen, this Disney animated adventure centres on a fiercely independent...

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

The 2003 comedy Bad Santa is a holiday classic that skilfully mixes gross-out humour with...

Allied Movie Review

Allied Movie Review

There's a terrific script at the heart of this World War II thriller, with a...

A United Kingdom Movie Review

A United Kingdom Movie Review

Based on a powerful true story from the late 1940s, this drama is packed with...

Indignation Movie Review

Indignation Movie Review

Philip Roth's layered novels are a challenge for filmmakers (see also 2003's The Human Stain...

Advertisement
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

It's been five years since the last Harry Potter movie, and J.K. Rowling has been...

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Yet another bonkers thriller starring Nicolas Cage, this trashy crime comedy comes from director Paul...

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

"Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall" is a DVD...

Arrival Movie Review

Arrival Movie Review

This sci-fi drama has an enjoyably brain-bending plot that leaves the audience almost stunned with...

Elle Movie Review

Elle Movie Review

There's a boldly comical tone to this outrageous thriller that can't help but unnerve audiences...

100 Streets Movie Review

100 Streets Movie Review

A multi-strand drama set in London, this film is very nicely shot and acted, but...

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

It's been seven years since designer Tom Ford made a splash with his award-winning writing-directing...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.