Forget Paris [1995]

Billy Crystal plays Mickey, a basketball referee who has to accompany his estranged father's body to France, where the old man requested to be buried with the other members of his D-Day platoon. Unfortunately for Mickey, the airline loses his body. Fortunately for Mickey, this leads him to meet Ellen (Debra Winger), an airline executive who takes personal charge of the case and even joins him at the funeral. A whirlwind Paris romance leads to marriage, but that's when the complications begin... The story of Mickey and Ellen's marriage is recounted by their friends (played by Joe Mantegna, Cynthia Stevenson, Julie Kavner, Richard Masur, John Spencer, and Cathy Moriarty) as they wait for Mickey and Ellen to arrive at a dinner party. And of course these friends have their own stories, which are played out in witty shorthand as they bicker about who's going to tell the next part of the Mickey/Ellen saga. Forget Paris is uneven (unsurprisingly, Winger is stronger in the dramatic sections and Crystal in the comic parts, a schism that takes its toll on their chemistry), but its best parts hold up, even if the whole is shaky. Plus, the movie's theme (that romantic memories aren't what makes a marriage work, you have to live in the present) is explored with conviction and tenderness. --Bret Fetzer

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