Plot – Amélie is an innocent and naïve girl in Paris with her own sense of justice. She decides to help those around her and, along the way, discovers love.
Director – Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Released – 2001
le Fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain
I first heard about Amélie during my college days, when my tutor couldn’t refrain from praising this quirky French romance filled with eccentric characters, interesting visuals and Tautou’s pitch-perfect performance, all of which prompted me to experience this film for myself, and quite simply I was blown away.
From the unconventional storyline that plays out like poetry, the stylistically interesting cinematography that transports you to a more gentile world and quaint soundtrack, you can’t help but hum along too.
This movie is very close to being perfect. The only downside coming from the fact that the film’s biggest asset is also the aspect that might put some viewers off. This isn’t an English language production, with the subtitles not able to do the wonderful dialogue justice and some humorous and charming exchanges getting lost in translation.
With Amelie, you have a rather simple coming of age romance elevated with the addition of wonderful little subplots packed with enough details it can feel as if you’re watching a film-within-a-film. This gives the world life and reminds you that although you’re following Amelie’s story, hers isn’t the only one taking place.
Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet along with cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel make great use of pastel colours, perfect camera work and a few special effects to create the idealised and almost magical view of Paris as seen through the eyes of archetypal manic pixie girl: Amelie, an extremely imaginative young girl who sees this great city with almost childlike wonder.
The movies charm also comes from the expert acting, especially that of Audrey Tautou, who portrays this absorbing character in such a way, you find it difficult not to fall for the character of Amelie, while the rest of the cast combine to make excellent whole. With each actor making the most out of their role and even though we only touch on their lives, you come to enjoy them thoroughly.
Amelie is a gem of a film and one of the most memorable European movies of the new millennium. Wearing its heartwarming charm on its sleeve, transporting you to a dreamlike world that is undoubtedly bound to make you smile.
If you like: Delicatessen, 500 Days of Summer, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World.