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My Golden Days 

Wednesday, Apr 6 2016
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Saying French directors love filming nude and nubile young women is like saying that the Eiffel Tower is tall and pointy, but ye gods, do French directors love filming nude and nubile young women, even if their characters don't care about what's under the flesh. Arnaud Desplechin's My Golden Days is a 20-years-later prequel of sorts to his My Sex Life ... or How I Got Into an Argument, and Days also includes plenty of sex and arguing. Much of the film is a flashback as middle-aged protagonist Paul (Mathieu Amalric), held for questioning at an airport due to some passport issues, revisits his childhood and teenage years. Those early traumas are mostly sped past, and an incident doing spy stuff as a teenager (Quentin Dolmaire) in the Soviet Union in 1980 is the most entertaining section, but the majority of the film involves his contentious, often long-distance relationship with the toothsome but troubled Esther (Lou Roy-Lecollinet). Paul always comes across as a bit of a dick, particularly when he tells Esther he's "not fond of women's intelligence, I find it ordinary," but that she's OK because "your intelligence doesn't repel me." Our hero, mesdames et messieurs! Her reply, before hugging him: "Because you know I won't use my intelligence to try to squash you." Oh, the French.

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Sherilyn Connelly

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