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Paris Blues

Where to Watch Paris Blues


Paris Blues from 1961 is a compelling drama that combines romance, music, and the enchanting allure of the city of Paris. Directed by Martin Ritt, the film boasts splendid performances by a stellar cast that comprises Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, and Sidney Poitier, among others.

The storyline of Paris Blues revolves around the intriguing lives of Ram Bowen (Paul Newman) and Eddie Cook (Sidney Poitier), two expatriate jazz musicians living in Paris. Dedicated to their craft, they are enamored by the city's vibrant jazz scene, its art, culture, and the freedom it affords them as compared to the racial tensions they left behind in the United States.

Paul Newman's character, Ram, is a promising trombonist, always striving to make a name for himself in the world of music while battling his personal demons. On the other hand, Poitier's character, Eddie, a seasoned saxophonist, is more settled, focused, and introspective. In their pursuit of artistic success and personal freedom, both men are committed to devoting their lives to music and have vehemently decided against falling in love and marriage, until fate decides otherwise.

The film takes an unexpected turn when two American tourists, Lillian Corning (Joanne Woodward) and Connie Lampson (Diahann Carroll), arrive in Paris. Lillian, a school teacher on vacation, forges an immediate connection with Ram, while Connie, a passionate young woman eager to embrace French culture, is enamored with Eddie's charm and music. The chemistry between the two pairs is palpable, and this romantic intersection adds a captivating layer to the film's narrative.

The couples traverse the city's romantic setting, enjoying the nightlife, music, and the indomitable charm of Paris. As their relationships blossom, both Ram and Eddie are challenged with the decision of whether to follow their hearts or stay true to their dedication to their art. The ensuing romantic entanglements and their potential consequences form the crux of the storyline.

Meanwhile, the depiction of Paris in the 1960s contributes significantly to the film's allure. The jazz clubs, music soirees, busy streets, and iconic landmarks make the city come alive and serve as a beautiful backdrop to the unfolding romance and drama. The city is not just a location but an active character in the film, influencing the mood, narrative, and the overall feel. Martin Ritt masterfully captures the city's energy, rhythm, and charm, which is in perfect sync with the movie's musical ambiance.

Paris Blues is also significantly fueled by its stunning jazz score. The melodious music, composed by the legendary Duke Ellington and featuring Louis Armstrong, plays a pivotal role in the narrative. It complements the story extraordinarily, adding depth and emotional resonance to the scenes. The film is a generous treat for jazz enthusiasts, with its mesmerizing performances and infectious tunes that accentuate the mood throughout.

On a deeper level, Paris Blues explores themes of love, ambition, identity, racial prejudice, and the existential crisis of artists. The film subtly highlights the racial discrimination that the African-American characters escape and their paradoxical feeling of being free yet displaced in the cosmopolitan city of Paris. It also raises compelling questions about the sacrifices artists make for their passion and the value placed on personal relationships and contentment.

Performance-wise, Newman and Poitier are remarkable as the jazzmen at the center of the film, giving nuanced performances that beautifully capture the intricacies of their characters. Woodward and Carroll, too, breathe life into their roles, and their on-screen chemistry with their respective partners is both heartwarming and complex. The dynamics and interactions between these four main characters are a primary highlight of the film.

In conclusion, Paris Blues is a beautiful fusion of romance, music, and drama set against the beguiling backdrop of Paris. With its splendid performances, engaging plot, vibrant music, and visually stunning setting, the film lures the audience into an enchanting world of jazz, love, and the quintessential Parisian charm. This movie is a gem from the early 1960s era of cinema and a must-watch for fans of the genre and the charismatic cast.

Paris Blues is a Drama, Music, Romance movie released in 1961. It has a runtime of 99 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.7. It also holds a MetaScore of 61.

How to Watch Paris Blues

Where can I stream Paris Blues movie online? Paris Blues is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Apple TV Channels, The Roku Channel Free, Pluto TV, Tubi TV, Kanopy, Google Play, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Paris Blues for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

Martin Ritt
Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Sidney Poitier
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