I have always found that watching French movies is a great way to boost your language skills. Who wants to sit pouring over textbooks for hours anyway? Watching French movies is also a great way to broaden your cinematic experience. Sure, we have lots of great movies in the English language, but other countries produce some astounding films also!
1. Un Air De Famille
When it comes to French movies, it is a good idea to start with a bit of comedy. Un air de Famille focuses on an old family restaurant. Each Friday night, family members congregate there. Sure, it doesn't exactly sound hilarious, but it is comical when you get into it!
2. Un Prophete
Sure, we have a lot of English language dramas that have done the whole bad prison thing to hell and back. However, you haven't really experienced prison thrillers until you have watched a French one. I sat watching this jail-based movie while biting my nails. It is extremely dramatic, and provides plenty of opportunities to make you jump!
3. La Passion De Jeanne D'Arc
This 1927 classic probably set the tone for The Passion of the Christ'. It takes a little effort to get used to the 1920's cinematics, but it is always fun to learn about Joan of Arc's history from a French perspective! The scenes are dramatic, and the ladies are still somehow quite glamorous. It is incredibly intense, as you would expect from a movie covering this courageous young woman's life.
4. Hiroshima Mon Amour
A lot of films focus on Hiroshima, as it was quite the tragedy! However, few focus on it from a romantic point of view. The romantic approach is what makes this film particularly unique, and as far as I am aware there is no other film like it. Resnais, the director, is quite a big name on the French movie scene!
5. A Nos Amours
Another great way to ease yourself into French movie watching is to feast your eyes on a teenage love story. Unlike a lot of English language films, this story is tragic and realistic. Suzanne, the protagonist, is a bit promiscuous as a teen. When her father leaves home, she marries someone and moves to America. It's a tad moralising, but I really enjoyed it!
You wouldn't have thought an action comedy could be that good in another language, but Taxi proves otherwise! This may sound a little dull, but it follows the story of a young man making his transition from pizza delivery boy to taxi driver. There is a little gang action in it, but in a comedic way! This is easy watching for those who are just starting to learnFrench.
7. Van Gogh
We all know Van Gogh was a troubled man. If you want to learn about his history while learning French at the same time, you can't go far wrong with this film. It focuses on the last three years of his life. There is a little comedy and romance, and a lot of drama.
We used to watch French movies at my school quite a lot. Sadly, none of the ones on this list were quite appropriate for a classroom setting! We were never allowed anything beyond the PG rating! Watching movies, even with subtitles, can have a surprising effect on your language progression. Start watching them without subtitles, and you will be amazed at what you pick up. If you have a French movie you love, what is it?