Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Original title: Le Fabuleux Destin D’Amelie Poulain
France/Germany, 2001. Claudie Ossard Productions, Union Generale Cinematographique, Victoires Productions, Tapioca Films, France 3 Cinema, MMC Independent, Sofica Sofinergie 5, Filmstiftung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Canal+. Scenario by Guillaume Laurant, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, dialogue by Guillame Laurant. Cinematography by Bruno Delbonnel. Produced by Claudie Ossard. Music by Yann Tiersen. Production Design by Aline Bonetto. Costume Design by Madeline Fontaine. Film Editing by Herve Schneid. Academy Awards 2001. Golden Globe Awards 2001. Independent Spirit Awards 2001. National Board of Review Awards 2001. Phoenix Film Critics Awards 2001. Toronto International Film Festival 2001.
Fans of unapologetically whimsical stories will adore this pitch-perfect French romance from Jean-Pierre Jeunet, the director behind Delicatessen and Alien Resurrection. Amelie, an introverted young woman who lives in the classic Parisian lifestyle of her mind’s own design, has her emotions put to the test when a photo-booth-snapshot enthusiast captures her fancy. Wholeheartedly meddling in the happiness of others but skilfully avoiding her own, Amelie circumvents her destiny to the extreme until it’s finally time to give in. Audrey Tautou couldn’t be more beguiling in the lead, her delicate smile and wide eyes perfectly complementing the striking photography and scintillating visual stylistics that Jeunet is careful to never overuse. The film’s incredible popularity with every festival audience it has played to (including the Audience Award at the Toronto International Film Festival) plus its box-office success in France is proof that we’re all hopeless romantics at heart.