Green Card (film)

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Green Card is a 1990 romantic comedy film written, produced, directed by Peter Weir and starring Gérard Depardieu and Andie MacDowell. The screenplay focuses on an American woman who enters into a marriage of convenience with a Frenchman so he can obtain a green card and remain in the United States.

Contents

Plot

Brontë Mitchell is a horticulturalist and an environmentalist devoted to the creation of urban gardens and parks on vacant lots. She is anxious to rent an apartment with a greenhouse, but the board of trustees would prefer a married couple as tenants. Her friend Antoine suggests she marry French immigrant Georges Fauré, who needs a green card in order to remain in the country. The two meet at a cafe in downtown Manhattan and after a brief conversation are wed in a quick ceremony at the nearby courthouse.

As a married woman, Brontë qualifies for the apartment of her dreams and, after moving in, she tells the doorman and neighbors her spouse is doing musical research in Africa. When she is contacted by the Immigration and Naturalization Service to arrange an interview to determine her marriage is legitimate, she tracks down Georges, who is working as a waiter. Although the two have little time to get their facts straight, the agents who question them appear to be satisfied with their answers. It's only when one of them asks to use the bathroom and Georges directs him to a closet that their suspicions are aroused, and they schedule a full and formal interview to be conducted two weeks later at their office.

Brontë consults an attorney, who advises her she could be charged with a crime if the authorities learn the truth about her marriage. She invites Georges to move in with her to enable them to learn about each other's past and their quirks and habits, and they quickly learn they can barely tolerate each other. Georges is a gregarious slob and smoker who prefers red meat to vegetarian food, while Brontë is a strait-laced clean freak obsessed with her plants. When her parents arrive at the apartment for an unannounced visit, Georges pretends to be the handyman.

The parents of Brontë's best friend Lauren Adler are planning to leave New York City and are contemplating donating their trees and plants to the Green Guerrillas, the group that oversees the development of inner city gardens. Brontë is invited to a dinner party to discuss the issue and discovers Georges is there, having been asked by Lauren. He so impresses the Adlers with an impressionistic piano piece set to a poem about children and trees that they agree to donate their plants to the Green Guerrillas.

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