Reading Advisory at the Ames Public Library
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Reading Advisory at the Ames Public Library
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French Films at Ames Public Library

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A-B | C-D | E-H | I-M | N-S | T-Z | Other DVDs and Videos on French Topics

In French with English captions, unless otherwise noted.

I Do (DVD FOREIGN I)  89 min.  2009. 

Luis is happily single, enjoys his job, and is pampered by his mother and sisters.  All that changes when his family decides he should get married.  Luis hatches a plot to avoid their plans: he'll hire the "perfect" woman to stand him up at the altar.

L’Iceberg (DVD FOREIGN LIC)  84 min.  2005. 

Fiona manages a fast-food restaurant and lives happily with her family until she gets locked into a walk-in freezer overnight. She escapes, only to find that her husband and children didn't notice she was missing! When Fiona develops an obsession for cold things, she drops everything, climbs into a frozen goods delivery truck and heads for a real iceberg.

Illegal (DVD FOREIGN ILL)  In French and Russian, with English captions.  95 min.  2010. 

Tania is a former teacher from Russia, living illegally in Belgium with her son, Ivan. When they are stopped for a police check, Tania is arrested and put in an immigration detention center while Ivan escapes. Threatened with deportation, Tania embarks on a journey, determined to preserve her dignity and find her son.

I’m Glad My Mother is Alive (DVD FOREIGN IM)  90 min.  2009. 

Thomas is a troubled teenager who was given up for adoption as a toddler and is now obsessed with finding his birth mother. After searching for years, Thomas finally finds his mother single, with a young child, and living in a nearby suburb. Thomas starts a relationship with her that is part courtship and part obsession, which drives him to an act of madness.

In the Beginning (DVD FOREIGN IN)  130 min.  2009. 

A professional conman poses as the construction boss building a highway extension. He cons the whole region, hires workers, and cynically enjoys the profits of his scam until he meets the lady mayor. She intrigues and unsettles him, revealing to him a world he never knew: feelings. How far will he go to save his victims and save himself from his own lies?

In the City of Sylvia (DVD FOREIGN IN)  94 min.  2007. 

A young artist searches the winding streets of Strasbourg in search of an old love. While sketching the beautiful women he sees around him at an outdoor cafe, he believes he sees her and sets off to find her, dashing down city streets.

Incendies (DVD FOREIGN INC)  130 min.  2011. 

After the death of their mother, a set of twins make a life-altering discovery. They travel to the Middle East to uncover the truth about the father they thought was dead who is still very much alive, and a brother they never knew existed. Along the way they piece together the story of the woman who brought them into the world, discovering a tragic fate as well as her exceptional courage.

Inch’Allah Dimanche (DVD FOREIBN INC)  In French and Arabic, with English captions.  98 min.  2001. 

“Family reunion," is the French government's euphemism for a 1974 law allowing Algerian wives to rejoin their husbands working in France. Strong-willed Zouina parts tearfully from her mother in the port of Algiers. Once in France, she and her three small children are at the mercy of her mother-in-law and confused by strange new customs. The radio is her only window on life and on the women of this new country.

Les Indes Galantes (DVD MUSICAL IND)  244 min.  2005. 

This exuberant production of Jean-Philippe Rameau's 1735 opera presents four exotic love stories.

Indochine (DVD FOREIGN IND)  156 min.  1992. 

In 1930s French Indochina, the Vietnamese begin to rebel against French colonialism.  This film depicts the last years of French rule as seen by plantation owner Éliane and her adopted daughter Camille, an orphaned Annamese princess who becomes a Vietnamese revolutionary.

Inspector Bellamy (DVD FOREIGN INS)  110 min.  2008. 

Inspector Bellamy tries to go on vacation, but murder travels with him, not to mention his black sheep of a brother, his bored wife, and enough suspects to fill a cruise ship. Even the inspector has a motive no one would suspect.

Into Great Silence (271.71 DVD INT)  Minimal dialogue in French and Latin, credits and some screen text in German, with English captions.  162 min.  2005. 

The Grande Chartreuse, home of the Carthusian Order and one of the most ascetic monasteries, is based in the French Alps. Using extended shots, no interviews, and no music other than chanting, it shows the monks' contemplation, work, and study.

Irma Vep (DVD FOREIGN IRM)  96 min.  1997. 

A Cantonese actress copes with a demented director and eccentric crew on a Parisian film shoot. This is the remastered version.

Is Paris Burning? (DVD FOREIGN IS)  In English or French, with English captions.  172 min.  1966. 

As the Nazis march through Europe in 1944, the freedom fighters of Paris mount a brave resistance. Hitler sends a top general to determine if the city can be held. If not, Paris will be burned.

It's Easier for a Camel (DVD FOREIGN ITS)  105 min.  2005. 

When Federica was young, she fantasized about foreign adventures. Now grown, her fantasies have evolved. Her career, boyfriend, and family make her struggle to find meaning in her life while the guilt of her wealth consumes her and pushes her over the edge.

I’ve Loved You so Long (DVD FOREIGN IVE)  117 min.  2009. 

A shell-shocked Juliette is released from 15 years in prison for murdering her son. As life has moved on, she must relearn certain basics. Banished from her family, she is reunited with her younger sister. Hopefully, Juliette will learn to forgive herself in the process.

Jean de Florette (DVD FOREIGN JEA)  121 min.  1986. 

A man inherits a farm and foolishly hopes to become a farmer. But before he even arrives, his neighbor plots to steal his land.

Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (DVD FOREIGN JEA)  201 min.  1975. 

The daily domestic routine of a middle-aged widow evokes a sense of impending doom. Her chores include making the beds, cooking dinner for her grown son, and turning the occasional trick. Her life is beginning to break down.

Jesus of Montreal (DVD FOREIGN JES)  119 min.  1989. 

A Montreal shrine seeks to inspire its congregants by modernizing its staging of the passion play. A promising cast of vibrant young actors are signed on - one fresh from perfume commercials, another from the pornographic film industry, and another who had an affair with the basilica's priest – and quickly drive the production on to become a smash hit. But as the play enjoys success, the actors become more and more challenged to separate their real lives from their lives onstage.

Le Jour Se Leve (DVD FOREIGN JOU)  90 min.  2009. 

A working-class man finds the only way to free the woman he loves from the arms of another is to commit murder.

Joyeux Noel (DVD FOREIGN JOY)  In French, English, and German, with English captions.  116 min.  2005. 

This film is based on the true story of three armies in the bloody trenches of World War I and the miraculous Christmas Eve truce they unexpectedly forge.

Jules and Jim (DVD FOREIGN JUL)  105 min.  1962. 

Before World War I in Paris, a girl alternates between a French student, Jim, and a German student, Jules. After the war, they meet again and form a shifting triangle.

Juste Avant la Nuit (Just Before Nightfall) (DVD FOREIGN JUS)  100 min.  1971. 

Charles Masson has an affair with Laura, the wife of his best friend, François Tellier. Charles strangles Laura when their S & M game goes too far. The apartment’s owner saw Laura and Charles two months earlier, but she does not tell the police. Although the police do not seem to have any clues, Charles has a difficult time coping with the situation.

Kilometre Zero (DVD FOREIGN KIL)  In French, Kurdish, and Arabic, with English captions.  96 min.  2005. 

A Kurdish soldier and an Iraqi taxi driver work together to return the body of a fallen soldier to his family. The family happens to live on the other side of the country.

Korkoro (DVD FOREIGN KOR)  111 min.  2011. 

During the Second World War, a Gypsy family travels the roads of France before learning that the Vichy regime no longer gives them the right to travel freely.

Lady Chatterley (DVD FOREIGN LAD)  161 min.  2006. 

A young woman, unable to be intimate with her husband after his war injuries, seeks solace and physical passion in the arms of a gamekeeper.

The Last Metro (DVD FOREIGN LAS)  131 min.  1980. 

In Nazi-occupied Paris, a Jewish director hides in his theater while his wife stars in its latest production. She and her leading man begin to fall in love, while a pro-Nazi theater critic causes stress to the entire cast.

Last Year at Marienbad (DVD FOREIGN LAS)  94 min.  1961. 

X attempts to convince A that they met last year in this hotel (or maybe in a different one). They loved each other, emotionally and physically. She agreed to elope with him and leave M, her husband (or lover). At the last moment, she refused (for whatever reason) and asked for a one-year postponement. Now, the year has passed and X has come to take her away. A claims she does not recognize X and does not remember any agreement. At first, X is surprised, and he recounts their conversations and supporting details. A persists in not remembering, although X produces a photograph of her.

Le Havre (DVD FOREIGN LE)  93 min.  2011. 

Marcel Marx, an old bohemian living in the French harbor city of Le Havre, stands up for a young African refugee when officials begin to pursue the boy for deportation.

Leaving (DVD FOREIGN LEA)  86 min.  2011. 

When stay-at-home mom Suzanne wants to return to work, her husband agrees to remodel a garage for her office. Ivan, a sexy Spanish builder, enters and changes their lives in ways no one could have expected. Suzanne and Ivan are drawn together by a passion that threatens to destroy her marriage and her family. Her husband will stop at nothing to destroy her first.

Léolo (DVD FOREIGN LEO)  107 min.  1992. 

Léolo Lozone, a twelve-year old dreamer, uses his imagination to escape the realities around him through writing.

Léon Morin, Priest (DVD FOREIGN LEO)  117 min.  1961. 

All the women of a village in Nazi-occupied France have a crush on Léon Morin, a devoted man of the cloth. He is most drawn to a sexually frustrated widow, a borderline heretic whose relationship with her confessor is a confrontation with both God and her own repressed desire. This film is a triumph of mood, setting, and innuendo from one of French cinema's virtuosos.

Let Joy Reign Supreme (DVD FOREIGN LET)  114 min.  1974. 

France, 1719. Louis 14th died four years ago and Philippe d'Orleans is the new regent. This film is a description of the court in this famed period of transition where the French Revolution smolders.

Life and Nothing But (DVD FOREIGN LIF)  135 min.  1989. 

Two years after World War I, Major Dellaplane helps two women search for the men they have lost in the war.

Look at Me (DVD FOREIGN LOO)  In French with English or Spanish captions.  111 min.  2004. 

Lolita's father is a writer with egotistical behavior, and she wants his attention. She competes for her father’s attention against those who could help her. When she meets a guy who likes her, Lolita finds she may be like her father.

Lorna’s Silence (DVD FOREIGN LOR)  105 min.  2008. 

Lorna is an Albanian woman who hopes to open a snack bar with her boyfriend. Without the money, she becomes entwined in a plan devised by mobster Fabio. A false marriage with Claudy will allow her to get her Belgian citizenship. Then Fabio will kill Claudy so Lorna can marry a Russian Mafioso who is anxious to get Belgian identity papers. But can Lorna keep quiet?

Lourdes (DVD FOREIGN LOU) 96 min.  2009. 

Christine is a young woman who has been confined to a wheelchair for most of her life. In order to escape her isolation, she joins a party to Lourdes, the iconic site of pilgrimage in the Pyrenees Mountains, where they travel in hope of finding spiritual comfort or bodily cure.

Love Me If You Dare (DVD FOREIGN LOV)  94 min.  2003. 

A childhood game of "dare" grows into an obsession for two friends, who, in adulthood, must choose between "the game" and their love.

Love on the Run (DVD FOREIGN LOV)  95 min.  1979. 

In this fifth and final film of the Antoine Doinel series, Antoine is in his thirties, divorcing Christine. He enjoys some success as a novelist and clings to his romantic fantasies. Newly single, he directs his affections to salesgirl Sabine, because he believes that without love, one is nothing. Along the way he renews his acquaintance with previous loves and confronts his past.

Love Songs (DVD FOREIGN LOV)  95 min.  2007. 

Three friends live together, have fun together, and sleep together. A death among them brings tragedy as the remaining two must pick up the pieces of their lives.

The Lovers (DVD FOREIGN LOV)  90 min.  1958. 

A restless bourgeois wife finds her eye wandering from both her husband and her lover to an attractive passing stranger.

The Lovers on the Bridge (DVD FOREIGN LOV)  126 min.  1991. 

A homeless artist, who is losing her sight, is drawn into a passionate relationship with a troubled street performer. Despite all obstacles, they find love and shelter on the famed Pont-Neuf Bridge in Paris. Their love will be tested by the artist’s secret past.

Madame Bovary (DVD FOREIGN MAD)  140 min.  1991. 

Bored with her life in 19th century France, a woman runs up debts and has adulterous affairs.  When her life catches up with her, she resorts to suicide.

Mademoiselle (DVD FOREIGN MAD)  103 min.  1966. 

A village in France is the unlikely setting for perversion and evil. A schoolteacher's suppressed sexual desire leads her to acts of destruction and a woodcutter awakens her passions.

Mademoiselle (DVD FOREIGN MAD)  85 min.  2001. 

Claire is a young woman leading a subdued life. A medical representative for a pharmaceutical lab, she has a husband, two children, and certain happiness. Pierre is an improviser who lives from hand to mouth by entertaining at seminars and company conventions. The two meet, and, for 24 hours, they brush against each other, flirt, and talk during their brief encounter.

Mademoiselle Chambon (DVD FOREIGN MAD)  101 min.  2009. 

Jean is a burly, happily married housing contractor. When he picks up his son from school, he meets the teacher, a willowy beauty named Mademoiselle Chambon. Their flirtation builds, and Jean soon has to choose between the intensity of his bond with Chambon or the responsibility and care he feels for his wife and child.

Making Plans for Lena (DVD FOREIGN MAK)  107 min.  2009. 

Recently liberated from her job and husband, Lena heads home to Brittany with her two children to escape the chaos of Paris. However, from the moment she arrives, she is confronted with unwanted advice, character analysis that borders on character assassination, and other unexpected surprises.

Man on the Train (DVD FOREIGN MAN)  90 min.  2002. 

A criminal and a retired poetry teacher meet in a French village and become unlikely friends. Each wishes to trade his life with the other.

Manon of the Spring (DVD FOREIGN MAN)  114 min.  1986. 

Ten years after the tragic events of Jean de Florette, Manon (Jean's daughter) seeks revenge against those she holds responsible for her father's death.

Marius.  130 min.  1931. 

See The Fanny Trilogy.

Married Woman (DVD FOREIGN MAR)  95 min.  1964. 

A married woman who is having an affair is unsure whether she loves either man. To complicate matters, she discovers she is pregnant and doesn't know who the father is. Now she must come to terms with her emotional infidelities.

Masculin, Feminin (DVD FOREIGN MAS)  105 min.  1966. 

Paul, a young idealistic would-be intellectual, struggles to forge a relationship with incipient pop star Madeleine in 1960s Paris.

Menage (DVD FOREIGN MEN)  84 min.  1986. 

Bob, a seductive, bisexual thief, entices Antoine and Monique, a bored and dissatisfied couple, into joining him as he robs wealthy homes. Turned on by the thrill of thievery, the couple abandons their world of predictability and a bizarre love triangle develops among the three.

Merci pour Chocolat (DVD FOREIGN MER)  97 min.  2000. 

Mika is the oh-so-perfect head of a Swiss chocolate company. Andre is her concert-pianist husband whose first wife died in a mysterious car accident. Why does Andre's son have no musical talent, while Jeanne, who shares his birthday, is a world-class pianist? Why does Mika insist that everyone sip the hot chocolate she prepares?

Mesrine, Part 1: Killer Instinct (DVD FOREIGN MES)  113 min.  2008. 

This film charts the odyssey of Jacques Mesrine, the French gangster known as French Public Enemy No. 1 and the Man of a Thousand Faces in the 1960s and 1970s. Infamous for his bravado and prison escapes, Mesrine robbed, kidnapped, and murdered in a criminal career that spanned continents until he was shot dead in 1979 by France's anti-gang unit.

Mesrine, Part 2: Public Enemy #1 (DVD FOREIGN MES)  134 min.  2011. 

In the climactic second part of the Mesrine saga, Jacques Mesrine is back in France after his assault on the maximum-security prison from which he daringly escaped. Once again in police custody and facing justice for his crime, Mesrine escapes from the courtroom after kidnapping the judge at gunpoint. His life comes once and for all to a full bloody circle.

Micmacs (DVD FOREIGN MIC)  104 min.  2009. 

First, a mine exploded in the Moroccan desert. Years later, a stray bullet lodged in his brain. Bazil doesn't have much luck with weapons. Released from the hospital and homeless, he is taken in by a crew of junkyard dealers living in a cave. One day, while out walking, Bazil recognizes the logos of the weapons manufacturers that caused his misfortune, and sets out to take revenge.

Molière (DVD FOREIGN MOL)  121 min.  2007. 

Molière is a down-and-out actor and playwright who is up to his ears in debt. Jourdain offers to cover that debt in exchange for Molière's theatrical talents to help win the heart of a widowed marquise. Disguised as a priest, Molière becomes a guest in Jourdain's palace - to the annoyance of Jourdain's wife, Elmire. The confrontation between Elmire and Molière turns seductive while Jourdain enlists the aid of an acquaintance to help him pursue the widow.

Mon Oncle (DVD FOREIGN MON)  116 min.  1958. 

The vague and clumsy M. Hulot, in contrast to his more wealthy sister and brother-in-law, is constantly, humorously, at odds with the modern world.

Mon Oncle Antoine (DVD FOREIGN MON)  104 min.  1972. 

An orphan comes to live with a foster family in a Canadian mining village and becomes a part of the comical foibles and heartbreaks of the town.

Mon Oncle d’Amerique (DVD FOREIGN MON)  123 min.  1980. 

Two men and a woman meet in mid-life crisis. Faced with disappointment, they muse about a legendary American uncle, a guardian angel who gives them their hearts' desires and tells them exactly what they wish to hear.

Monday Morning (DVD FOREIGN MON)  122 min.  2002. 

Every Monday morning, Vincent begins the same monotonous routine ─ one and a half hours of non-smoking transit to an uninspiring factory job. Back at home, family obligations always interrupt his passion for painting. Vincent can't take another Monday morning!

Monsieur Hire (DVD FOREIGN MON)  79 min.  1989. 

Based on the Georges Simenon novel: Les Fiançailles de Monsieur Hire. In an apartment, Monsieur Hire endures a solitary life. His only solace is an occasional night out bowling and the voyeuristic admiration of his neighbor. When police discover the nude body of a young woman in a nearby vacant lot, Hire becomes the prime suspect.

Monsieur Lazhar (DVD FOREIGN MON)  95 min.  2011. 

While going through his own personal tragedy, Bachir Lazhar, a 55-year-old Algerian immigrant, is hired as a substitute in an elementary school after the abrupt death of a teacher. With great sensitivity and humor, Monsieur Lazhar depicts the encounter of two distant worlds: that of an immigrant and a group of shaken but endearing kids who, together, will transcend their losses.

Monsieur Vincent (DVD FOREIGN MON)  114 min.  1947. 

St. Vincent de Paul rose from slavery to become a trusted advisor to queens and princes. His commitment to the poor made him a great humanitarian.

Moolaadé (DVD FOREIGN MOO)  In Jula and French, with English captions.  124 min.  2004. 

Four young girls who face ritual "purification" decide to flee to the household of Collé Ardo Gallo Sy, a strong woman who has shielded her own daughter from the mutilation. Collé invokes the custom of moolaadé (sanctuary) to protect the fugitives, and tension mounts as the stand-off pits Collé against village traditionalists and endangers the prospective marriage of her daughter.

The Moon in the Gutter (DVD FOREIGN MOO)  137 min.  2009. 

After his sister is brutally raped and commits suicide, Gerard spends all of his free time at the scene of the crime, hoping to catch his sister's attacker. When he meets a wealthy woman who could be his ticket out of the slums, he must choose between her and his mission for revenge.

M. Hulot's Holiday (DVD FOREIGN M.)  87 min.  1953. 

Presents humorous impressions, incidents and mix-ups at a seaside Brittany resort involving the accident-prone Mr. Hulot.

La Moustache (DVD FOREIGN MOU)  84 min.  2005. 

When a man shaves off his mustache, a trademark he's had for years, no one notices, insisting he's never even had one. Is he going insane, or is this a conspiracy?

Mozart’s Sister (DVD FOREIGN MOZ)  120 min.  2011. 

This is a re-imagined account of the early life of Maria Anna 'Nannerl' Mozart, five years older than Wolfgang, and a musical prodigy in her own right. Originally the featured performer, Nannerl has given way to Wolfgang as the main attraction, as their strict but loving father Leopold tours his talented offspring in front of the royal courts of pre-French revolution Europe.

My Afternoons with Margueritte (DVD FOREIGN MY)  83 min.  2010. 

Germain, a nearly illiterate fifty-something man who is considered the town idiot, meets elderly Margueritte, who is articulate and highly intelligent. Through their afternoon visits and friendship, Germain realizes he is smarter than he thought.

My Best Friend (DVD FOREIGN MY)  95 min.  2006. 

An antique dealer is flabbergasted to learn that his closest acquaintances don't actually like him. Challenged to provide an actual friend in only ten days, or lose a valued vase, his search provides a witty and thoughtful look at the meaning of friendship.

My Life in Pink (DVD FOREIGN MY)  In French with English, Spanish, or French captions. 88 min.  1997. 

With six-year-old certainty, Ludovic believes he was meant to be a girl and that the mistake will soon be corrected. But he finds only rejection, isolation, and guilt as the intense reactions of family, friends, and neighbors strip away every innocent lace and bauble.

My Piece of the Pie (DVD FOREIGN MY)  109 min.  2012. 

After losing her factory job, single mother France enters a housekeeper training program and lands a job cleaning the apartment of power broker Steve. When Steve's son arrives to stay with his dad, Steve realizes he might need child care. France may have an opportunity for payback against the man who almost single-handedly shut down the factory where she worked.


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