Before my trip to Paris, one of the things I did to get me in the mood for Paris was to watch movies that were filmed n the city of lights. On my search, I found a few films in my personal DVD collection and online rental subscription to inspire me for my trip to Paris. Here is a short list of films shot in Paris to get your bags packing for the city of lights.
Audrey Hepburn films – I gave these films its own category because I did not realize that Audrey Hepburn made several films shot in Paris. Audrey Hepburn is one of my favorite actresses so it’s no surprise that I have a small collection of her films one DVD. In my collection, I found the following films: Paris When It Sizzles, Charade, Love in the Afternoon, and Funny Face. Another film that you might find somewhere is called How to Steal a Million. The films were made in the 1950’s and 1960’s so if you like classic films, it’s a good place to start.
Midnight in Paris – starring Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard and directed by Woody Allen. It’s a story of a writer from Southern California (played by Owen Wilson) who takes a trip to Paris with his fiancé played by Rachel Adams. Wilson’s character is obsessed by the idea of Parisian life during the roaring 20’s where at the stroke of midnight he is picked up by a vintage limo from the same area of the city to meet the most important icons in history such as Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Salvador Dali. There is another Woody Allen film that you can check out called Everybody Says I Love You.
Amelie – but of course, it is the film that introduced Audrey Tautou to the world and the world fell in love with her instantly. Her character plays a waitress at a coffee shop who happens to be a very observant girl. She follows the lives of the people around her – her customers and neighbors, discovering their life stories through various things they leave behind. The film is in French but then are English subtitles available so you can follow.
Da Vinci Code – this very famous and controversial film started its story into the most famous museum in the world – The Louvre. It also takes you to other places around the city until the story ventures out in the French countryside called Chateau Villette. This film is now available in syndication so you can find it at any basic cable channel. By the way, the film concludes in the most iconic structure of the Louvre – I.M. Pei’s glass pyramid.
La Vie En Rose – starring Marion Cotillard, the film that won her an academy award. It tells the story of France’s “little sparrow“, the singer Edith Piaf, from the start of her career until her dying day. Cotillard’s performance was so impressive it made her one of the most famous French actresses in the world along with Audrey Tautou and Catherine Deneuve.
Le Divorce – starring Naomi Watts and Kate Hudson. The film starts the story of an American poet living in Paris married to a French artist. Her husband found another and soon filed for divorce from his pregnant poet wife. It tells the story of her journey on this divorce with the help of her sister played by Kate Hudson. It also gives us an insight to the French’s idea of marriage, infidelity and divorce. Did I mention it is a Merchant-Ivory film. They are one of the best producers in the industry, so I’ve heard.
Girl on a Bicycle – I found this little movie on my Amazon Prime subscription. It’s a very international film set in Paris with a cast of characters from Germany, Italy, France and Great Britain. Don’t worry, the film was done in English. This fun, romantic comedy with take you to various places in Paris in including the Notre Dame Cathedral.
From Paris With Love – starring John Travolta and Jonathan Rhys-Meyers. If you like action and spy films here’s one shot in Paris. Jonathan Rhys-Meyers plays the US ambassador’s personal aid working undercover for the CIA. John Travolta plays a no-nonsense special CIA agent who goes to Paris for an assignment and has a liking for a “royale with cheese”. The two characters meet and works together to stop bomb threat at the US Embassy in Paris
I hope you can all find these films in either your online movie subscription or on DVD. Do they still have DVD rental stores around? If these does not inspire to go to Paris, I don’t know what will.