Film review: Le Weekend (6 out of 10)

There aren’t many films aimed at a very narrow and defined audience but Le Weekend is definitely a movie for couples who have been married for several years.

Okay, so you don’t have to have tied the knot 30 years or more ago to enjoy this drama/comedy but you certainly get a lot more out of it if you fit the bill.

Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan

Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan

Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan are the couple who are celebrating their wedding anniversary in Paris, the scene of their honeymoon a few decades before.

However all is not well in the marriage. Meg is frustrated by the constant sameness of her life and the feeling of lost opportunities.

Nick has also reached a crossroads, dismayed by the lack of sex in his marriage and uncertain of his future job prospects.

Their children have left home, a moment that many couples find life-changing as the emphasis of a marriage changes dramatically.

Duncan and Broadbent are quite superb, giving us no doubt of their heart-felt frustration.

Jeff Goldblum is a surprise addition to the cast but slots in really well as a former university student who studied back in the day with Nick and acts as a catalyst for the couple’s emotions.

There are some comic moments in the film which thankfully break up the deep philosophising.

But there are also some more intimate scenes that don’t really work. Also (and it’s possible I’m being too picky here), I’m not sure a couple of this generation and background would go round swearing as much they do.

Director Roger Michell has a good enough CV for this type of movie (Hyde Park on Hudson, Notting Hill) and writer Hanif Kureishi is the right age to appreciate the issues raised.

But an analysis of middle age and the fears and concerns that period of life brings will certainly not be everyone’s cup of tea.

But others will recognise at least part of themselves in the characters.

And any movie that uses the music of cult singer/songwriter Nick Drake can’t be too bad.

Film details: Le Weekend (15) 93mins

Director: Roger Michell

Starring: Jim Broadbent, Lindsay Duncan, Jeff Goldblum

Screening courtesy of Cineworld Crawley