Sunday, December 14, 2008

I Heart Audrey Tautou

No brainer. Who doesn't have a thing for the woman who played Amelie? Well, I do. If you don't or aren't familiar with Audrey Tautou--then you need to get into your Netflix queue real quick and start adding movies. Although Amelie is the pinnacle, Tautou has not just been a one film actress as she's carved out a prominent role for herself in French cinema.

Let me brag for a second and talk about how I was a fan of Tautou before the aforementioned Amelie came out. She had a supporting role in the film Venus Beauty Institute in 1999 and while it wasn't a large role, Tautou gave a fresh performance that had me wondering who this dark-eyed Frenchwoman was and hoping I'd see her in films in the future.

Two years later and Tautou and director Jean Pierre Jeunot created one of the quirkiest, most romantic films (and film characters) of all time--Amelie. And yes, I said of all time. I love this movie. Every time I watch it I get a warm, "I'm just glad to be alive!" feeling that makes radiate happiness and hope for tomorrow (not a frequent attitude in my pessimistic nature for those reading who don't know me). Tautou as Amelie is one of the best casting decisions in the last few decades. I've read that Emily Watson almost got the part and while she might have been okay, there would have been serious issues with her in this role. Tautou is just so natural and appropriate in the role of Amelie that it would have been a shame had someone else gotten the role.

Since Amelie Tautou's done a bunch of films I've seen enjoyed. I love French cinema so it's no surprise she pops up a lot in classy French farce like God Is Great and I'm Not, He Loves Me...He Loves Me Not and Priceless. Cedric Klapisch's ensemble diptych The Spanish Apartment and The Russian Dolls are both worth watching as is 2004's reteaming with Jeunot for A Very Long Engagement. After writing this I need to finally watch The Da Vinci Code just so I won't miss any of her films. Tautou is playing Coco Chanel in a big biopic in 2009 so she might garner a lot of attention for that promising role.


Brandon said...

Yeah, how can you not love her? Though I thought she seemed very out of place in Dirty Pretty Things. Not her fault, I thought she did a good job, just poor casting on their part.

Replicant said...

You know, I didn't really mind her in Dirty Pretty was certainly a different role for her though. Much darker.

Rumblefish said...

Emily Watson didn't almost get the part, it was written for her. She said that she didn't think she'd have time to learn French well enough, and thus they began auditioning people. Phew!