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They say that French is the language of love, so it's not surprising that there are a lot of French romantic films. Many are in the comedy genre, although these are generally very different from the more usual Hollywood Rom-Coms. Others are much more serious, dealing with the sometimes harsh realities of life.
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Content

 
  • Amour

    Amour

  • L'Hermine

    L'Hermine

  • 20 ans d'├ęcart

    20 ans d'écart

  • L'Arnacoeur (Heartbreaker)

    L'Arnacoeur (Heartbreaker)

  • Gemma Bovery

    Gemma Bovery

  • Grand Central

    Grand Central

  • Mon Roi

    Mon Roi

  • Souvenir

    Souvenir

Each summary is linked to the IMDb web site where you can find additional information.
Click on film title to follow link.
  

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Amour
Amour
This is an exceptional film. Georges and Anne are retired music teachers in their 80s living in a rather splendid Paris apartment. Anne suffers a stroke and the story, which takes place entirely within the apartment, is that of how Georges cares for her as she deteriorates and ultimately progresses into dementia. In accordance with her wishes, he won't allow her to go to a hospital or care home, a fact that confuses and frustrates their daughter, whose help Georges rejects.
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L'Hermine
L'Hermine
Michel Racine is the judge, or more correctly in the French criminal court (cour d'assises), le président of the court. A fact that he takes pains to point out to a number of the witnesses, who mistakingly address him as Monsieur Judge. He has a ruthless reputation, not improved by having a touch of the flu, and is about to try a case where a young man is accused of killing his baby daughter by kicking her.
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20 ans d'écart
20 ans d'├ęcart
Alice is a thirty-eight year-old editor at the fashion magazine Rebelle who's a workaholic at the expense of her private life. On a return flight from Brazil she drops her flash-memory card, which is picked up by architecture student, Balthazar. He calls after her but she doesn't hear. He is obviously smitten with Alice, and arranges to meet her at a bar to return the memory-stick. But he's left it at home, and offers Alice a lift there on his scooter. Two of her co-workers spot them, and mistakenly think she kisses the young man.
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L'Arnacoeur
L'Arnacoeur (Heartbreaker)
Alex, with the help of his sister and her husband, operate a rather unusual business. Basically they break up relationships, which may sound somewhat harsh, but we're led to believe that it's only where the woman is at risk of marrying somebody unsuitable. Needless to say somebody, usually the woman's father, pays them to perform this service.

His ultimate challenge arrives in the form of Juliette (Vanessa Paradis) who is hopelessly in love with her soon to be husband, a rather boring Englishman.
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Gemma Bovery
Gemma Bovery
Not strictly a French film as much of the dialogue is in English, but in all other respects it's very French, with Gemma Arteton making a fair job of some French dialogue.

Martin has eschewed the life as a publisher in Paris and returned to his little home town to run his late father's bakery. Onto the scene arrives Gemma Bovery and Charles her husband, an English couple who have bought a rundown house opposite the baker's home. Martin is immediately taken with Gemma, constantly looking at her to the point of leering - "goodbye to sexual tranquility".
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Grand Central
Grand Central
In France, a Central is a power station, and a Grand Central is a nuclear plant. An unlikely setting for a story of romance, but in the hands of the French female director/screenwriter Rebecca Zlotowski it works.

Gary is a casual worker looking for a job. The interview for the power station is no more than a formality, as there aren't that many people who want to work in highly radioactive areas.
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Mon Roi
Mon Roi
Directed by French actress Maïwenn Le Besco, this film certainly offers a female perspective of what it must be like to be a woman in love with an absolute jerk. I felt sorry for her and embarrassed by his shameless mistreatment. Vincent Cassel plays the said jerk, Georgio, while Emmanuelle Bercot is his long suffering girlfriend/wife Tony.

Their relationship starts in a club, where Tony eyes Georgio, prior to flicking water in his face. In doing this she is emulating what she had seen him do years before, when she was serving in a bar.
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Souvenir
Souvenir
Liliane works in a paté factory, her job being to place items of garnish on terrines of paté as the final part of the process. It is repetitive and mind-numbingly boring. In the evenings she sits alone at home, having a drink or two and watching the TV. Then one day, Jean, a temporary worker arrives and immediately feels that he recognises Liliane as a once famous singer who, with her song Souvenir, was just pipped for victory by ABBA at the Eurovision song contest.
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