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Parents' Guide to

I Love America

By Jennifer Green, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Sexual content, language in disappointing French dramedy.

Movie NR 2022 103 minutes
I Love America Movie Poster

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Despite excellent actors and story material with plenty of potential, this French dramatic comedy doesn't succeed as a drama or as a comedy. The humor in I Love America is especially disappointing, considering how rich the possibilities were with a 50-year-old Parisian in Los Angeles on dates with strangers met through a dating app. One encounter with a Danish nudist is novel and funny, but other scenes are bland and predictable. It would seem the film aims to shock with its frankness about sexuality, but that's a tall order for a tale set in contemporary LA, and ultimately even the attempt feels outdated.

The dramatic elements involve forging new love in middle age as well as reconciling with one's past. Some of Lisa's story is presumably autobiographical for writer-director Azuelos, the daughter of French singer Marie Laforet, who passed away in 2019. The film reenacts the past in flashbacks, but considering the acting talent Azuelos had on hand, this feels like a waste and the scenes at the boarding school in particular get repetitive. Lisa's relationship with John strikes a genuine note and deserved more screen time, as did Luka's authentic love connection glossed over at the end. The acting in this film is very natural, and Marceau is a pro, making I Love America not exactly lovable but at least watchable.

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