STUDIO: Lions Gate
MSRP: $14.98
RUNNING TIME: 117 Minutes
SPECIAL FEATURES: Scene selections!

The Pitch

Deep down, all French people really want to be Americans, except for the part about getting really fat and shopping at Wal-Mart.

The Humans

James Gandolfini, Alicia Silverstone, Nicholas Chatel and Sarah Grappin

He could punch their faces until the end of time, but he could never seem to defeat the demons inside his own heart. Why didn’t you love me Daddy? WHY?!

The Nutshell

Patrick and his lady love Marie both have an intense infatuation with America, an obsession fueled back the fact that they live in American occupied France shortly after World War II. They dig through the garbage of the American G.I.s stationed there and collect old Coca Cola bottles and jars of Hellman’s Mayonnaise. They both plan to eventually escape the drudgery of their lives and take off for the promised land, but Patrick’s chances of doing so become much more likely when he becomes close friends with an American soldier.

Who wants to sing Alouette and moodily puff on cigarettes when you can get drunk with James Gandolfini and ogle Alicia Silverstone in a cheerleader outfit? Ricky slowly starts to assimilate the piecemeal American lifestyle offered by the G.I. base, even becoming a drummer in a rock and roll band. Before you know it he’ll have a framed black velvet airbrushed painting of Dale Earnhardt hanging in his bedroom and consider “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan his idol.

Oddly enough, utilizing Jimmy Snuka’s offensive repertoire isn’t very helpful in bar fights.

The Lowdown

New World is presented in a full frame aspect ratio with overdubbed English dialogue for the actors speaking in French. It’s a little distracting at first, mainly because it sounds like a 30-year-old woman was used to voice a teenage girl.

The relationship between Marie and Patrick is as dysfunctional as one can get. Marie craves nothing but attention and is deathly afraid of being alone. When spurned by Patrick, she wastes absolutely no time in throwing herself into the arms of the next available man. If that doesn’t get her enough attention, attempted suicide always works in a pinch. The state of the fractured relationship remains the same at the end as it was in the beginning. Is this a happy ending? The characters certainly seem happy, but given the underlying issues motivating Marie’s behavior, it’s hard to have an optimistic forecast for the couple’s future.

New World is more of a character study than a narrative with a definitive beginning and ending. There’s no moral to the story, there’s no resolution and to be honest, there’s very little entertainment. The only substance comes from observing the actions of Patrick and how he places the American lifestyle up on a pedestal. Whether you agree or disagree with his ultimate viewpoint on Americans comes entirely from your background and values.

It’s not a film for everybody and it’s not very exciting, but it does have a cow fetus being garroted in utero. Not many films can boast of a similar feature.

Ron does it deeper.

The Package

Through the use of interactive menus and scene selection, you can zip to any point in the movie with the push of a button! The speedy nature of this selection may make it intimidating to some, but it’s okay to take it slow and easy into it. Your mastery of scene selection will come with time and lots of practice. Before you know it, you’ll be the sultan of scene selection and you’ll have New World to thank for it.

5.0 out of 10