Amélie (2001)

Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s playful modern fairytale made Audrey Tautou an overnight star as a mischievous Parisienne pursuing love and happiness in her own inimitable fashion.
“It takes so much confidence to dance on the tightrope of whimsy. Amelie takes .... chances, and gets away with them.” Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times, 2001 Best known for dark and chilly fantasies – Delicatessen; The City of Lost Children (1990) and Alien: Resurrection (1997) – Jean-Pierre Jeunet moved into, for him, entirely new territory with this life-affirming, colourful comedy, while Tautou’s captivating performance prompted comparisons with Audrey Hepburn. Amelie is both the story of its heroine’s eccentric quest for love and an affectionate, shamelessly old-fashioned portrait of Paris, particularly the picturesque area around Montmartre and the oddball characters living there. Visually brilliant, fast-moving and full of cinephile in-references, Amelie is also instantly accessible and entertaining. While some found its relentless charm overwhelming and its rose-tinted vision of France politically suspect, it became an enormous arthouse hit, received five Oscar nominations and was named European Film of the Year. Chocolat (2000) mined a similar seam of Gallic whimsy, while Funny Face (1957) had Audrey Hepburn finding love in an equally romanticised Paris.
2001 France, Germany
Directed by
Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Produced by
Claudie Ossard, Arne Meerkamp Van Embden
Written by
Guillaume Laurant, Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz, Rufus
Running time
123 minutes