You finally are coming to France, time seems longer than usual until your flight, your impatience is slowly killing you, we have a solution for you. Why not take advantage of your free time to watch movies set in our lovely country to already feel a bit as if you are here.
It would allow you to discover places that maybe you didn’t hear of yet, or even teach you some cultural background or etiquette to make you enjoy France even more when you will interact with locals.
We suggest a list of films, from comedy to blockbusters, all of them will make you travel to Paris and probably make you even more impatient to get there.
1. Amelie from Montmartre
This film is a classic, the scenario might be a little simple but it is more than that, as you follow the fate of a waitress falling in love with a mysterious stranger. You will enjoy the “fantasized timeless Paris” of the movie’s director, from yellow color filters, amazing music and stereotyped characters, this is highly poetic, entertaining and funny. Hard to resist the candid charm of Audrey Tautou, and not to fall in love with the Montmartre. When you arrive in Paris you can still visit the café bar “les deux moulins”, “Maison Collignon” grocery store and some of the places you will discover in this masterpiece.
2.Da Vinci Code
This famous film inspired by the best-seller eponymous book, is a must see before any trip to Paris, it will allow you to dive into the Louvre museum’s atmosphere and discover some of the secret history of the city. After watching it, you will want to follow Tom Hanks’s steps in the street of the French Capital, see the upside down pyramid of the Louvre but also wander in the not so famous church of St Sulpice looking for details you would have ignored otherwise. Even if all of the “facts” stated in the movie are not all true, we can forgive it, as it show the city a very beautiful and interesting way
3. Before Sunset
Let’s get romantic! This is the sequel of Before Sunrise, so a little homework for you as you need to see them both in proper order. Before Sunset will make you discover so much of the city, hoping these two fall in love again in Paris. Follow them on a cruise on the River Seine, chatting in Shakespeare and Company, or strolling along the secret oldest sky walk in the world “La Coulée Verte”. Once in France, you can easily find these places and activities and feel like you are in a movie, just experience the magic romantic vibe of Paris, and let yourself fall in love with it.
4. A Monster in Paris
This animated film will make you travel back in time, more than one century ago. Follow the adventures of a cabaret singer who hid a monster from the Police, and discovers his gift for music. From scenes showing you the river Seine flood and the chaotic streetlife of the French capital at that time. You will also discover Montmartre, the Botanical Garden and even the famous Love Lock Bridge. The film’s director especially focuses on respecting the real architecture and atmosphere of the city in the early 20th Century, you can then be sure to find some of the streets when you visit Montmartre in Paris.
5. Julie and Julia
There is no Holiday in France without memorable moments enjoying food, this is why this film is a classic mouth-watering must see. It is about Julia Child’s beginning as a cook in France, and Julie Powell’s challenge to cook her way through Julia Child’s first cookbook: Mastering the art of French cooking. The script allows you to travel between Paris in the post war period, and NY in modern times. Fall in love with all the flavors of French cuisine while encouraging the young Julie to gain confidence about her life. Finally this is also one more reason to enjoy the talent of Meryl Streep.
6. Midnight in Paris
One of the best Woody Allen’s films, a fantasy tale about Paris, the romance and classicism of its days and the magic of its nights. The movie explores themes of nostalgia and modernism. While we follow Owen Wilson struggling between his materialistic wife during daytime, and the more artistic and humanistic values he encounters every night when he travels back in the Paris of “la Belle Epoque” one century ago. From nights among famous painters, musicians and night owls, to the deception of having to spend all day with his family in law until midnight magic happens again. The setting of the film allows you to discover Montmartre, Giverny gardens, the Pantheon, the Latin Quarter’s medieval streets and finally “Île de la Cité”.
This animated Disney/Pixar movie has everything Paris has to offer: the culture, the famous landmarks, the French accent and of course… the food! Ratatouille is practically a love letter to the city. The Paris of Ratatouille isn’t a place you can really visit. Still, never has the city looked more beautiful and inviting. The film makes you want to just go through the screen and go for a stroll, perhaps grab a baguette and some wine, while you sit and watch the people go by. Pixar does an incredible job of animating the food, and it will leave you salivating, hungry for more.
As you can see, it is very easy to visit Paris through films, the city welcomes an average of ten shooting films or documentaries a day. Nothing feels better than strolling around a street your favorite actor walked in, to have lunch in the same restaurant than a Hollywood star. We can easily help you visiting these places during one of our bike tours, But before that, you should give yourself time to immerse in one of these movies and start dreaming about your perfect holiday in France.