I’m always looking for ways to escape, even for just a while. If I can’t travel to France I can keep myself entertained by watching unique French series and movies that can be found on YouTube, Netflix, and streaming.
If you’re looking to escape as well, check out some of my favourites that you might not be familiar with. Hopefully, they’ll bring a little joy and happiness to your day.
6 unique French series and movies
1. YouTube video: Cercle Concerts (Château de Fontainbleau)
It’s not just the music but also the aerial videography. It’s the Cercle experience. Cercle promotes DJs, music, and venues. It streams the concerts live on Facebook from all over the world in the most unique settings. I’m pretty sure they use a drone and so glad they do. The views are spectacular. Usually, there are only a couple of hundred in the audience and the DJs typically play electronic music. Venues have included Château de Fontainbleau, Palais Longchamp in Marseille, the Eiffel Tower, and Le Grand Palais in Paris.
2. YouTube video: Alice In Paris
Very amusing short vignettes about a young woman named Alice who shares her experiences and love of food at popular boulangeries, restaurants and tourist spots in Paris. This very successful series can also be found on Amazon Prime.
3. Netflix series: Dix Pour Cent (Call My Agent)
I absolutely love this “Dix Pour Cent” (10 Percent) because it’s funny and truly original. I’m not familiar with any show that has gone behind the scenes of a talent agency, and certainly not one set in Paris. What’s special about this French comedy is that real-life actors and actresses such as Isabelle Adjani, Jean Dujardin, Isabelle Huppert, Nathalie Baye, and others make major appearances in each episode. I patiently wait for season 4. On Netflix the show does have English subtitles.
4. Netflix series: Criminal France
There is a whole collection of Criminal episodes-country based. So you have Criminal France, Criminal Germany, Criminal Spain, and Criminal UK. The Criminal France series has 3 episodes. In each, a suspect is questioned by police in an interrogation room about a particular crime.
It is somewhat like America’s “Law and Order” but without the blood and gore. It’s intellectual and the storylines are well written because you never know, until the end, if the accused is innocent or guilty.
5. Movie: Haute Cuisine
Movies based on real-life characters seem to be the most interesting and “Haute Cuisine” (2012) is one that is definitely for foodies. It’s about Danièle Mazet-Delpeuch (played by Catherine Frot), who became French President Francois Mitterand’s private chef. Yes, there are fireworks in the storyline, but also beautiful presentations of cuisine.
6. Movie: The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
This is another real-life movie that has stayed with me ever since it was first released in 2007. It’s about the story of Jean-Dominique Bauby, who was a journalist and editor of Elle magazine. In 1995 while driving his car, he had a stroke and acquired locked-in-syndrome, where he was completely paralyzed and unable to speak. W
hile you might think this is a depressing movie, it isn’t. It is mind-boggling and inspirational. Why? He was able to write his book, “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (Le Scaphandre et Le Papillon)” by blinking each letter, of each word. Amazing. Mathieu Amalric won the César Award for Best Actor in 2008.
If you love French movies, be sure to check out the ones that I’ve seen at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), Film Festival Favourites and those that you can see in Paris with English subtitles, Lost In Frenchlation.
Are there any unique French series or movies that you’d highly recommend? Please share!
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