WARNING – this film has only incidental motorcycling content.
In Paris Memories Mia, (Virgine Efira) commutes to her job as a translator/interpreter on her retro Triumph wearing only leather jacket and jeans. Abandoned by her husband halfway through dinner in a restaurant – hubby has other fish to fry – she sets off home on the Triumph only to be forced by a typical French downpour to take refuge in a restaurant. The restaurant then becomes the scene of a terrifying Bataclan style attack. The director’s brother is apparently a survivor of this incident.
The remainder sees the traumatised Mia trying to piece together her recollections of the event, taking us through issues of common humanity across cultural and racial lines, survivor guilt, and the underclass of sans papiers who keep the restaurant industry going. In the process she re-evaluates her life and forms a relationship with a fellow victim of the attack, Gallic Kirk Douglas lookalike Benoit Magimel.
Efira absolutely rocks the lady biker look, keeping her close-fitting leather jacket on in just about every scene. However, as someone who anxiously checks the weather forecast before going out on a bike and keeps a pair of waterproofs in my Kriega even on the finest day: why did she go out so unprepared? With appropriate gear she could have been home and watching the French equivalent of the News at Ten instead of hiding from murderous terrorists – but then there wouldn’t be a film.
Catch this at the cinema if you can – otherwise it’ll probably be out on a streaming platform before too long.
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