Amélie – The uniquely creative French film (2001)

So over the next few weeks I’ve decided to review a few of my favourite French films. French films are always unpredictable, unlike Hollywood films you have no idea who’s going to fall in love with whom and when all seems happy there might be a sudden death! I’ve decided to start with Amelie, the greatest film I have ever seen.

The utterly charming French romantic comedy recreates love and compassion through one young woman who’s destined to mend the lives of people around her. Jean-Pierre Jeunet produces Amelie with genuine pleasure; a film bursting with clever wit and irresistible visuals.

Amelie Poulain had an eccentric childhood, as we learn through flashback, raised by two equally eccentric parents who overprotected her and misdiagnosed her of a rare heart disease. As a result she was home schooled and spent most of her time alone, evolving an active imagination. Amelie now works as a waitress in Paris and indulges in the lives of her friends. When she meets a distinctively unique man by the name of Nino she instantly falls in love and the rest of the film follows her unique journey through love, the rediscovery of self and the search for true happiness.

Audrey Tautou is a flawless, doll-faced woman whose expressions and feelings slowly appear as the film continues. It’s a wonderfully coarse performance for which Tautou appears to originate for. Strengthened by a strong supporting cast of remarkable French actors, including actor Mathieu Kassovitz as Amelie’s mysterious lover, comedian Jamel Debbouze as delightful Lucien and Raymond Dufayel as her fragile neighbour, Audrey is constantly in the limelight.

Theoretically, the film is excellent. Jeunet operates inventive techniques to allow Amelie’s world to come to life. Bruno Delbonnel’s cinematography is an appealing illustration of yellows, greens and browns gathered into a beautiful and even dreamlike world. The compositions that escort the scenes are immaculate and remarkably suit all scenes exceptionally well.

Amelie is a heartwarming romance matched by an enchanting atmosphere of whimsy and burning emotions that together create a modern fairy tale. What’s amazing is the way the love story loans some desirable heart and soul to all the visual traces. Here is a rare film that will draw you in through the powerful act of compassion and joy.

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8 thoughts on “Amélie – The uniquely creative French film (2001)

  1. Hi exceptional blog! Does running a blog such as
    this take a massive amount work? I’ve absolutely no expertise in computer programming but I had been hoping to start my own blog soon. Anyway, if you have any ideas or tips for new blog owners please share. I know this is off subject but I simply had to ask. Appreciate it!

    • Yes it does take an enormous amount of dedication and perseverance!
      It doesn’t require a lot of experience to work a blog, through wordpress I found it very easy to manage the blog without much background in computer programming. 🙂
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      Cheers x

  2. I saw Amelie for the first time on the weekend it opened here in Kansas City. I had seen trailers and was captivated and could not wait to see it. My anticipation was answered with one of the most memorable movie-going experiences I ever had. When it ended the first word that popped into my head was “bliss”. Remember the scene where Amelie is walking with the blind man and talking rapidly and when she leaves him he looks to the heavens and is all aglow? That is truly the way I felt at the end of this film. Wow! I had long been a fan of Jeunet’s work, but his stuff with Caro always had a deliciously dark streak. This was pure bliss, it really was (is). I’ve often said that if I were to set aside the original Star Wars trilogy, which I fell hard for as a child, and the LOTR trilogy, which I love as an adult, Amelie is my favorite film of all time. But I’m a hopeless romantic, so that is no surprise.

  3. What a beautiful story! That blind man was so beautiful and most scenes in the movie really inspire me to go above and beyond with helping others and assisting the community 🙂
    Amelie is by far my most favourite film! It’s one that I’m happy to watch over and over and I’m sure I’d never get bored!!

    • Have you seen his more darkly comic “Delicatessen”? It too has a sweet love story in it, but is definitely a black comedy. Also “City of Lost Children” is an excellent, albeit very strange, science fiction story.

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