The movies have taught us time and time again that love is an incongruous circumstance to find oneself in. As film has evolved, so too, has the portrayal of love and all its "romantic" qualities. Now, we almost always see it in a negative light. Roger Michell's Le Week-End has managed to show both sides of the coin as it follows Nick (Jim Broadbent) and Meg Burrows (Lindsay Duncan) on an expensive trip to Paris they can't afford in honor of their thirty year anniversary.
Clearly playing up the "opposites attract" platitude, screenwriter Hanif Kureishi (who also wrote Venus, which Michell directed as well), instantly highlights the disparate nature of Nick and Meg through their fight over the hotel accommodations when they first arrive. Meg, already hesitant to have come on the trip in the first place, is livid over what she perceives to be Nick's cheapness and lack of consideration--even though it was the same hotel they had stayed in during their youthful courtship.
Disillusioned by her marriage and the boring turn it has taken, Meg is overtly the one with a stronger interest in starting over again. In an attempt to make things more exciting, she checks them into a luxurious hotel that's hardly within their budget. Momentarily placated, Meg still proves unwilling to let things get sexual with Nick (when he asks, "Can I touch you?" she replies, "What for?").
Several times throughout the course of the first day, Meg threatens to leave him. It is during one of their makeups that they encounter Morgan (the always odd Jeff Goldblum), a former fellow student of Nick's from Cambridge. After talking himself up, Morgan invites him to a dinner party celebrating the release of his book.
Before heading out to the party the next day, Meg and Nick catch Jean-Luc Godard's Bande a Part on the hotel TV. Remembering the choreography from the iconic dance scene almost immediately, Nick starts busting his moves (no hip crack sound effect included). Meg is still largely disgusted with Nick, especially after discovering that he's been fired from his teaching job for racially slandering a female student.
From the second the set foot into Morgan's apartment, it's evident that the evening is going to be one of psychological challenges. Morgan takes Nick aside almost right away to tell him of how he left his wife and children in New York to start all over again with his new pregnant wife, Eve (Judith Davis). At the conclusion of Morgan's story, Nick states, "I don't share your delusion." Morgan inquires, "What delusion is that?" Without missing a beat, Nick asserts, "That if you give up on someone you're free."
And that is the entire core of what Le Week-End is about--that most people in relationships are too quick to give up, convinced that there must be someone better, someone more magical out there for them. Such a collective delusion causes people to forget that they're with a certain person for a reason. And if they could just take the time to remember said reason they first fell in love, it's possible to spark the trigger of sentimental memory and find renewed interest in the one they're with.