This delightful film explores the life of Pierre, who suddenly finds his life might soon be over as he waits for a heart donation which might not work. Meanwhile, his sister cares for him whilst wistfully searching for love, harbouring some bitterness from previous experiences. Initially, this leaves her somewhat cold, and slightly indifferent to Pierre's bad news, which adds to his sense of lonliness and helplessness.
As a downbeat Pierre views Paris from his balcony, in beautifully shot, atmoshperic scenes, he realises that people take life for granted, and feels sadness and a sense of injustice as he watches other characters "carefree" in the city.
These other characters blend in and out of love, using people, hurting each other, and generally displaying typical human behaviour. We are constantly reminded that they are lucky to be able to enjoy life, albeit with their various problems, whilst Pierre has seemingly little hope for the future.
At the same time, and with a fair degree of irony, poor immigrants from Cameroon try just to get into Paris at all.
Yes, at times the Paris-dwellers and their spontaneous love match-ups seem a little ridiculous, but this is deliberate; in satarising them, it draws our attention more strongly to the irony that we overlook the simple things available to us.
The magic of this film is that it takes well-worn, simple ideas, but presents them in a way which we can easily relate to. We empathise with characters whose problems, mainly in relationships, seem depressingly real, yet we are soon reminded to put things in perspective by the bad luck suffered by Pierre.
There is also a superb score accompanying the film, in particular the downtempo tracks which perfectly capture the mystery and bustle of the city at the same time (I enjoyed the music enough to find out who the artist is and make a purchase).
The messages are simple and deliberately presented in a refreshingly innocent, almost naive manner, creating a charming film.