6 Cinematic Love Letters To Paris

5. Amélie (2001)

Amélie Poulain (Audrey Tautou) is a uniquely odd woman - raised in seclusion by parents who wrongly believed her to have a heart defect, she grew up to be a painfully shy Parisian waitress, content to shun romance and the every day in favour of the company she keeps in her little Montemartre coffee shop and indulging in regular flights of fancy. However, her unexpected discovery of a tin box of childhood memorabilia hidden in her apartment leads her on an adventure across the city to find its owner, meeting myriad colourful characters along the way. The film was shot in over 80 real locations in Paris (one can even visit Amélie€™s little coffee shop, Café des 2 Moulins, for a grand crème and some people-watching) though production made liberal use of CGI and digital intermediate techniques to create the film€™s distinctive, hyper-colourful look. Full of whimsy and charm, Amélie shows its audience a fairytale city through the eyes of its heroine, Tautou€™s pixie-cut-wearing personification of the French idea of joie de vivre. The city is painted in bright colours, populated by eccentrics and with adventure to be found around every corner. Amélie€™s Paris is not the real Paris - in fact, the film came under some fire on release for seemingly €˜whitewashing€™ the capital by showing very few ethnic minority characters - but it€™s a magical place that many would love to visit.
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Jen is an actor, writer and clown, living and working in London.