New York, I Love You

As with its predecessor, Paris je t’aime, there are hits and misses. Producer Emmanuel Benbihy decreed that each of the 11 segments of this “collective feature film” be set in a specific neighborhood, but only a few manage to capture the spirit of their surroundings. The duds, like Jiang Wen’s pickpocket three-way with Hayden Christensen, Andy Garcia and Rachel Bilson and Mira Nair’s corny collision between Natalie Portman and Irrfan Khan, have a canned, flattened quality that drags the collective down. Orlando Bloom has some fun with the lonely freelance life, greasing up to play a composer for hire with an impossible client, and Ethan Hawke and Maggie Q reimagine the dynamic of the street-corner pickup. But the most effective entries, by Allen Hughes (Bradley Cooper and Drea de Matteo navigate their found chemistry), Fatih Akin (Ugur Yücel and Shu Qi reach out but can’t quite connect) and Joshua Marston (Eli Wallach and Cloris Leachman shuffle off to Coney Island), bring both bitter and sweet to their snapshots of the city’s most cherished and elusive quality: intimacy. — Michelle Orange

Categories: Movies