Amelie from Montmartre(2001)
France / French
"She'll change your life. "Amelie, an innocent and naive girl in Paris, with her own sense of justice, decides to help those around her and along the way, discovers love.
Like cotton candy!
You'll either fall in love with this film or you'll be driven insane.
Personally, I was one who fell in love with it. Amelie is about a strange
young woman who is in love with the interconnectedness of the world. Her
life is nothing special, but it gets better when she's helping other
feel wonderful. There is a downside, though. She doesn't just do this to
a good person. She finds that she can only communicate with the rest of
world indirectly. When Amelie finds a man in whom she has an interest, she
finds that she can only play games with him from a distance. When the time
comes to approach him, she can't.
Right now, I'd like to use Amelie to dismiss the German director Tom
He directed two of the most pretentious films of the last few years, Run
Lola Run and The Princess and the Warrior, both of which have a huge
following. The themes and interests of these three films are very similar.
The difference is that Amelie does not take itself seriously. It's fluff.
It's fluff and it knows that it's fluff. All of Tykwer's inventiveness -
never mind that it's never at all very innovative - is for nothing. He
thinks he's changing the world and the face of art. By knowing its limits,
Amelie warps far beyond Tykwer's films. And since it is not pretentious,
it's much easier to love. It has no real depth, but it is wonderful and
Therefore, a lot of people are going to hold this close to their hearts,
considering it one of their favorite films. They're going to introduce it
other people, and it will have (it already has) a much-deserved cult.
Enough of the anti-Tykwer rant. I assume that a lot of his fans will like
Amelie, and a lot of Amelie fans will discover and like Tykwer, no matter
what I have to say about it.
One more reason why Amelie is wonderful: Audrey Tautou, who plays Amelie,
simply is loveable. She's the most gorgeous thing to come from France
Anna Karina. When this is released on DVD in the U.S., I'm going to buy it
and watch it a lot just to stare at Ms. Tautou (oh, please let it be
"Ms."!). May her career continue and blossom!
Okay, the final paragraph of the review is reserved for complaints. They
small, but they exist. The film does become too much after a while. It's
as bad in that way as the similar Moulin Rouge!, but it can put some
on the eyes at times. There are also a lot of loose ends, and pieces that
don't seem to make much sense. I think that the filmmakers were just being
so inventive that they left some of the corners untidy. My biggest
complaint, though, is the abundance of sex in the film. That sounds
childish, but let me explain. Amelie would be the perfect date movie, if
for the "I wonder how many people are having an orgasm right now?" scene,
the strip tease scene (toplessness isn't as taboo in Europe), and a
multitude of dildos in the sex shop scenes. The film is one of the most
unabashedly romantic films of recent years, but those sexual scenes pop up
every once in a while randomly and for no real reason. The film can't
be called an "adult movie," with adult themes (it's an escapist, romantic
fantasy), so these scenes are all and only detrimental. This film would
be an ideal film to introduce subtitles to teenagers, but, for the same
reason, that might prove controversial. All in all, though, the film is a