Amelie

Integrative Studio Week 2

13/01/2020

Today we were shown a French film called Amelie,or as the French people call it,Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie Poulain/The Fabulous Destiny of Amélie Poulain.The film is about a young woman named Amélie Poulain, who, after discovering a lost box, decides to do good deeds for others—until she realizes she’s been neglecting herself in the process. Then she must overcome her own shyness and her own reluctance to achieve happiness of her own.

What I liked about the film:

  • The scenes in the film are set in a small French town(probably the director’s version of Paris in 2001),and they have a certain filter on them which gives the whole movie a surreal vintage look.It makes me want to enter the film and sit in one of the cafes to eat a croissant. I loved the setting of the film.
  • The movie has a refreshing,feel-good energy. Usually,all the movies that all of us watch are usually some dystopian sci-fi movies with huge budgets,based on history, or rom-com flicks set to make me sniffle and cry. Amelie’s character is very happy-go-lucky and the film is nowhere close to depressing. So it’s very different from the kind of content I usually watch.
  • Audrey Tatou,the actress who plays in the lead,has done complete justice to her character,to the point where I started believing that Amelie was a real person.Her convincing oddball antics made me fall in love with her childlike innocence.
  • This is the kind of movie that will give you the same enjoyment and warm feeling every single time you watch it.I love knowing about movies like these,since they are like an arsenal of things to watch on a lazy afternoon when nothing else comes to mind.
  • It made me think.Thing about little things in life and how sometimes you can have a little faith in humanity.
  • Attention to detail.The continuous narration in the background and the filming style helps the audience understand every nitty-gritty of the story and gets them involved.Some details are also quite humorous.
  • Making a whimsical,comedy film is difficult.Striking the right balance between charming and hilarious versus plain stupid is quite the risk to take in a film.But Amelie gets it just right.

What I disliked about the film:

  • Amelie is the kind of movie where,if I look away for one second,ten events have passed by.At the same time,if I keep watching for too long,there’s parts where it can get slightly slow. The pace of the movie could have been better.

Entertainment/Humour:

  • I find the movie quite entertaining.The humour in the movie,as mentioned earlier is quite whimsical/silly.But it does not cross over and become stupid.The scenes make you giggle with second-hand embarrassment and the dumb innocence shown by the characters sometimes.
  • I don’t mind watching this movie again! Funniest moments for me in the film:
    1. Amelie’s mother’s unexpected death due to someone else’s suicidal tendencies
    2. Amelie wondering how many orgasms were hit at the same moment in her town-and the hilarious montage that follows(precisely 15)
    3. Pictures of the gnome in different locations around the world
    4. Amelie messing with the rude shopkeeper’s house, by changing and switching the weirdest things!( and his reaction to realizing all of it)
    5. The entire cafe shaking thunderously and Amelie releasing steam from the expresso machine to cover Georgette’s squeal

What is it about Amelie that appealed to you?
Childlike innocence. The start of the movie is very pivotal,showing the childhood of the lead character and an explanation to why she is the way she is.Being enclosed within the four walls of her own house with no childhood friends could have gone very wrong,driven her to become a sociopath,even,but it didn’t. It leads to Amelie’s ever curious perspective of the world and I quite enjoyed seeing Montmarte through her eyes.Her determination once she decides on a task is also really charming to watch,along with execution of every detail of her meticulous plans.Amelie finds happiness in the little things in life.I find this last bit quite relatable too, which is probably why I was able to connect to the character in my own way. Amelie compels the audience to fall in love with her easygoing ways and her creepy,creepy smile!

How does the film talk about places and people?

The film shows places and people through the protagonist’s eyes. It shows places in the speed in which Amelie is moving past them. For example, when she goes around looking for the Bredateau address ,time zaps within seconds as she jumps from escalators to bridges and trains. In the scene with the blind man, we can only register Amelie’s surroundings according to how she describes them to the man. We don’t notice anything else. People in the film are described according to the narrator, of course, and we can judge them based on their likes and dislikes. We get to see how Amelie’s relationship develops with each and every character. The neighbour living below her starts off as “The Glass Man” for her,whom she keeps a watch on and sees what he’s painting from a distance. But they soon grow close, over the discussion about the ‘girl with the glass’ from the man’s Renoir painting. Similarly, we get to know a lot more about Amelie’s father and how the father-daughter dynamic works after Amelie’s mother’s death and how the duo copes with it.

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