I love quirky characters and I love foreign films. The French film Amélie, released in 2001, was perfect for me. The French title is Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie Poulain (The Fabulous Destiny of Amélie Poulain). The film is directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Jeunet and Guillaume Laurant wrote the script and it depicts life in contemporary Paris. Amélie Poulain (Audrey Tautou) is an odd woman. She is shy and doesn’t have many friends. Even as a child she didn’t have any playmates. After her mother’s death her father withdraws from society and from her. Her loneliness fosters a delightful imagination. When she moves away from her father she becomes a waitress at Café des 2 Moulins, which is located in Montmartre.
Amélie has never been successful in love. One day she discovers a box of childhood memorabilia in her apartment. This changes her life. Amélie decides to hunt down the owner of the box to return the hidden treasures. If the man is happy about getting his stuff back she will continue to bring cheerfulness into people’s lives. During her quest she meets her neighbor, Raymond Dufayel (Serge Merlin) who never leaves his apartment. He is a painter who keeps repainting Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party. Her search for the man who lost his memorabilia and her relationship with her neighbor drastically changes her life.
The movie is a romantic tale that involves a wonderful cast of nutters. The writing is fantastic. I marveled how they were able to connect so many crazy characters into a seamless story. These types of movies remind me why I love movies. If you enjoy romantic comedies, this is a must-see film. It was nominated for five Academy Awards. It won Best Film at the European Film Awards. Moreover, it captured four César Awards and two BAFTA Awards.
This review is part of my journey to see films from each country around the world. The World Cinema Series is hosted by Caroline. If you would like to join in on the fun, please visit her site. Also, Words and Peace hosts an I Love France meme everything Thursday and you can post anything that has to do with France.