Joey Wellman, a cantankerous American cartoonist, accepts an invitation to come to an exhibition in Paris, because his estranged daughter Elsie is a student there. He arrives with his girlfriend Lena, and very soon wants to go home as the culture shock is too much for him.
An underappreciated masterpiece: a grand collage of cultural clichés that triumphantly transcends its simple parts with exquisite tonal control. A film about death (of a career, of a vision of oneself) & memory (it IS Resnais!), I find its self-conscious in-betweenness (France & America, musical & cartoon, the ideal self & the empirical self) immensely liberating, & yes, tearjerking.
One of my favorite movies. Jules Feiffer is my main man. Alain Resnais works best w/ material that cuts against the grain of his self-seriousness. But it's serious. Dead serious. And funny. There is pathos. I love it so much. Why can't movies throw concepts into play w/ such bemused dexterity w/ more regularity? Nobody wants to gamble on a perfect lark. I Want to Go Home is an absolutely perfect lark.