Amélie (Le fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain)
Release year: 2001
Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Screenwriter: Guillaume Laurant, Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Starring: Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz, Rufus, Lorella Cravotta, Serge Merlin, Jamel Debbouze, Clotilde Mollet, Claire Maurier
Ratings: 5 Oscar nominations: Best Original Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Sound, Best Foreign Film. 1 Golden Globe nomination: Best Foreign Film.
The shy and reclusive Amélie has an ability to make her own life fantastical and a big, warm heart which makes her decide to do good for others. Determined to create happiness for the people around her she uses her imagination to lead them in the right direction. The only one she forgets to help, is herself.
Acclaimed director Jean-Pierre Jeunet (The City of Lost Children, 1995) is known for making colourful and magical movies and none more than his amazing Amélie that made its sweet-faced titel star an international hit. Despite the fact that the director originally wanted Emily Watson for the lead it is hard to imagine the movie without Tautou (Coco avant Chanel, 2009). She plays Amélie so delicate and with an innocent naivety that makes her irresistable while her clever and imaginative way of handling things makes her a true heroine. The beautiful cinematography of the movie uses colour manipulation to enhance the magical look of the movie, increasing the sense of fairytale you get when you watch the movie. But the story is in fact very realistic, only the whimisical way of looking at life makes it enchanting enough to appear as a fairytale. The warm colours and the peculiar way of introducing characters by listing their likes and dislikes stands in strong contrast to the isolation Amélie exposes herself too, keeping the at times sad destiny of the heroine light-hearted untill she recieves the push she gives others. The result is one of the best feel-good movies made but with a deeper meaning underneath the loveable surface. A true gem and an instant classic that will undoubtly be appreciated of future generations as well. Watch it if you have a heart!
The movie was mainly shot in Paris where the crew crew cleaned the areas needed for shotting to maintain the fantastical look of the movie.
Picture copyright: Camera Film