8 out of 10



A Romantic Tale of Our Times

During the late 1990's, at the time of the death of Princess Diana, there seemed to be a lack of hope and innocence in films and the world in general. An era rife with cynicism, Amelie was a ray of light. Despite beautifully flawed and tragic characters, it is a film of hope that is a joy to watch because it connects with its viewers.

Amelie follows the life of Amelie Poulian, a shy girl, who grows up in the suburbs of Paris and moves out to become a waitress in Montmartre. Touching lightly on the universal subjects of the memories of childhood, realities of aging, loss and isolation, it brings hope to a range of characters that are so realistically like us, precisely through their eccentricities and flaws. For, at Les Deux Moulins Cafe, Amelie devotes herself to searching for love and a meaning to her existence by helping those around her including The Glass Man, Lucien and most precious, her relationship with Nino Quincampoix in her own, inimitable and highly amusing ways.

Directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, written by Guillaume Laurant (City of Lost Children) and
starring Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz and a charming cast of supporting actors, including veteran French film star Rufus, Isabelle Nanty and Yvonne Moreau, it is an excellent film on all levels with flawless dialogue and the performances. Similar to films such as Delicatessen and City of Lost Children, the cinematography (Bruno Delbonnel), black and white flashbacks, animation and special effects add a unique dimension to the picture. The soundtrack composed by Yann Tiersen is like icing on the cake.

Winning 5 Oscar nominations even as a French language film, it was, in short, the movie we all wanted to see, before it was even written.

The Movie We All Want To See

Film Critic: Jennifer M Lillies