Top favorite movies about Paris and France
To say 2020 has been a doozy is an understatement. And since we are all “grounded,” I’m sharing a list of my top favorite movies about Paris and France to keep the dream alive! Some are based on books, some are classics. All transport you for a moment to the fabulous France. (If books are more your pace, check out my top five books to read before visiting Paris.)
Let’s start with Paris!
You’ll find on my list several movies starring Audrey Hepburn. She was the epitome of grace and style and forever associated with Paris (and Givenchy). Funny Face (affiliate link) is hands down my favorite. The movie is a tour of Paris itself from the Eiffel Tower to the iconic La Maison Rose in Montmartre. Love, Laughter, Paris. If you haven’t seen this classic, you need to add it to your list.
Next up for Audrey Hepburn movies is Charade (affiliate link). Another classic with suspense, romance and comedy. She has some of the funniest lines. This movie is so gloriously early 60s. While Paris is much more front and center in Funny Face, this movie has you whirling around Paris trying to figure out who is who.
From classics to today, Midnight in Paris (affiliate link) is it. I am not a fan of Woody Allen or his movies so I was hesitant to watch this one. But after talking with several friends who said this move was not like any other Woody Allen movie, I gave it a try. Like so many others, I LOVED it. The movie combines modern day Paris with the history of the Lost Generation all thanks to one serendipitous taxi ride.
Julie and Julia (affiliate link)- The movie is fabulous. The book, not so much. I really wanted to like the book because the story is so wonderful but 3 pages in, I stopped reading. When the movie came out, I knew IT would be fabulous. I mean it has Meryl Streep. Has she ever made a bad movie? Teaming up once again with Stanley Tucci, the pair embody Julie and Paul Child. Oh how I love this movie. The movie bounces back and forth between Julie, who is working her way through Mastering The Art of French Cooking, and Julia Child’s life in France and her journey to her iconic cookbook and tv show. Meryl Streep plays Julia so well, you forget you aren’t watching Julia herself.
For a more artsy film, Amélie (affiliate link) fits the bill. This quirky, colorful film is so unique, I’m not sure how to even describe it. Classified as a rom-com but keep in mind the humor is more subtle. This film is shot all over Paris but the city is so craftily intertwined, it becomes part of the story. It is a visually stunning and creative movie.
Wrapping up my list of movies about Paris is the family friendly Hugo (affiliate link) A wonderful story of an orphan (why are they always orphans?) who lives in a train station and has a wonderful adventure trying to solve the mystery of the “machine.” Cinematographically wonderful. What else would you expect from a Martin Scorsese film?
Now on to the rest of France!
Topping my list is A Good Year (affiliate link) starring Russel Crowe as a banker who inherits his uncle’s chateau and vineyard in Provence (ah, to be so lucky). He then goes on a journey of self discovery. Sort of like the male version of Under The Tuscan Sun. Filled with sweet humor and vineyards of Provence, this movie is worthy of binge watching over and over.
Staying in the South of France, The 100-foot Journey (affiliate link) is a lovely movie of two worlds colliding – the Michelin star restaurant owner Madame Mallory (played by Helen Mirren) and the sage Papa of Maison Mumbai. Love and war breaks out between these two restaurants and cultures a mere 100 feet apart. Both Mallory and Papa have wonderful, quick dialogue and the whole movie is a delight.
In the rom-com category are two movies with rather predictable yet delightful storylines. Both are stories of mismatched travel companions where conflict turns to comedy turns to romance. Paris Can Wait (affiliate link) stars Diane Lane on a trip from Cannes to Paris. A drive that should take about half a day and ends up taking two. A wonderful adventure of the sights and sites of France. The second is (to me) much more a laugh out loud comedy – French Kiss (affiliate link) with Meg Ryan and Kevin Klein. Meg Ryan plays her usual quirky typecast but the comedy of Kevin Klein just plain works.
To round out my list are two classics. First, Alfred Hitchcock’s To Catch A Thief (affiliate link) with Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. Set in the French Riviera, this movie has style, plot twists and humor that only these three can deliver. If you haven’t seen To Catch A Thief, add this one to your list too! Lastly, another Audrey Hepburn movie. Two For the Road (affiliate link). The story is told in flashbacks of the good and the bad of the decade long marriage. A striking change from Funny Face and Charade. A bit more gritty and artsy film of its time. Follow Audrey Hepburn and Alfred Finney on their journey through France.
I hope you enjoy my movie suggestions. Did I leave one off this list? Be sure to let me know your favorite movie about Paris and France by connecting with me on The Paris Itinerary Instagram and Facebook pages.
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Happy movie watching!