One of my favorite ways to get in the mood before a big trip is to watch movies set in whichever country I’m going to.

Since I’ve been getting ready for a fabulous solo trip to Paris next month, I’ve been checking out all the best movies set in Paris, including classics like Midnight in Paris, Sabrina, and Funny Face.

After all, who doesn’t love seeing Audrey Hepburn take on “the City of Lights”, and Woody Allen, despite all of his flaws, perfectly captures the old world magic of Paris. 

Watching these films has me excited as I plan the details of my time in France

I hope these Paris movies make you just as excited as you dream up your trip to Paris!

Best Movies Set Paris in English

Paris Movie Night

The Phantom of the Opera

As a total Broadway nerd, The Phantom of the Opera will forever be close to my heart.

Even though nothing beats seeing the musical live, the most recent movie was a great adaptation. 

If you’re not familiar with the story, basically this is what you need to know: it’s a love triangle between an opera singer, a viscount, and a mysterious masked singing teacher with a lot of singing.

It’s romantic, dark, sexy, plus set in the stunning Opera Garnier and frankly just a really fabulous way to spend a couple of hours. 

Fun Fact: When you visit the Opera Garnier in Paris you can see Box #5 which is labeled as The Phantom of the Opera’s Box, because the film is based on a famous novel about the legendary phantom.

The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
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Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris

This was one of my favorite films to watch on my long-haul flights last year.

Basically, it follows the adorable Mrs. Harris, a windowed housekeeper on her journey to Paris to buy herself a Dior gown.

If you want something fun and charming to watch, this is the perfect movie.

Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris
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Moulin Rouge

If you want a quirky romantic movie musical for your Parisian movie night, look no further than Moulin Rouge!

This is definitely a film you’ll either hate or adore depending on your preferences. I have friends who fall into both categories.

I’m someone who absolutely loves Baz Luhrmann and movie musicals, so I was head over heels in love with Moulin Rouge! When it first came out in the early 2000s.

The film was nominated for eight Oscars, winning for Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction.

It was even adapted into a Broadway musical a couple years ago, which though slightly different from the film, is still excellent and worth seeing when in New York.

Moulin Rouge!
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Funny Face

Forget The Devil Wears Prada, and check out the original fashion makeover classic, Funny Face, starring the one and only Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire, and Kay Thompson.

Hepburn plays a bookworm who ends up being talked into becoming a model for a big fashion magazine after they promise her a trip to Paris. 

I could watch this movie on repeat, and already have it queued up to watch as I pack for Paris next month.

The music by Gershwin is catchy; the performances are magical; and the fashion is absolutely timeless!

Passport to Paris
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Ratatouille

Join a rat named Remy as he follows his dream of becoming the best chef in Paris.

Obviously, he’s got a few hurdles to get over, including the fact he’s a rat.

Thankfully, he’s a rat who’s resourceful and has exquisite taste in fine dining.

Will he impress the Michelin inspector and get an excellent review?

Watch to find out!

This is the perfect film to watch with kids to get them excited about visiting Paris and trying new foods.

Ratatouille
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Broken English

This old indie film is with beautifully truthful comments about what it’s like to be single at the age when all your friends are coupled up and married.

When Nora meets a cute French guy at a party, she follows him back to Paris to see how their romance plays out…and well, you’ll have to watch to see how it ends.

Broken English is a really fun watch for your next movie night.

Broken English
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Midnight in Paris

I think Midnight in Paris might be one of those charming films that pretty much everyone loves.

This Woody Allen classic is a love letter to the magic of Paris, complicated relationships, and the longing to live in a time we think would have suited us better. 

If you haven’t seen it yet, download it now. This is a film I could easily watch on repeat, and almost always watch on my way to Paris.

Midnight in Paris


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Lost in Paris

Lost in Paris is easily the quirkiest movie set in Paris on this list.

The film follows a small town librarian from Canada on her journey to France to find her Aunt Martha.

While she’s searching the city for her aunt, she meets a romantic vagabond who begins pursuing her.

This is the perfect choice if you want a whimsical movie with lots of physical comedy.

Lost in Paris
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Sabrina

It’s hard to choose just one favorite Audrey Hepburn film, but this is easily in my top five.

She plays Sabrina, the chauffeur’s daughter, who goes away to Paris, and comes back a whole new person, with a much chicer wardrobe.

When she returns, her crush, one of the estate’s owners, doesn’t recognize her, and the drama unfolds.

This is a magnificent film that reminds you that you can always reinvent yourself, especially in Paris.

Both versions of Sabrina are absolutely wonderful. I’ve seen each of them multiple times. You really can’t go wrong downloading either.

Sabrina
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Sabrina
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An American in Paris

They really don’t make movies like this anymore. It’s truly a shame. The music and the dancing in this movie musical are iconic!

The story was even told on Broadway a few years ago, with much success. To be honest, I’m kind of surprised Hollywood hasn’t had a go at remaking this yet.

An American in Paris follows an American painter living in Paris as he falls in love with a local.

Will love conquer all, or will a wealthy benefactor split them up?

Watch to find out!

An American in Paris on Broadway
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02/19/2024 08:10 am GMT
An American in Paris
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Hugo

Head to 1930s Paris and follow Hugo on the journey of a lifetime around Paris after he’s orphaned and left to fend for himself while living in Montparnasse Train Station.

Chances are this film at least sounds familiar, as it was big on the award circuit when it came out in 2011.

It’s directed by Martin Scorsese. This fantasy drama is based on the novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret.

Hugo
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French Exit

This film is about a Manhattan socialite who moves to Paris when her inheritance has run out is so under-rated.

Michelle Pfeiffer and Lucas Hedges are fantastic in this dark comedy. I had high hopes after seeing the trailer, and the full film didn’t disappoint.

French Exit
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Colette

After moving to Paris with her new husband, Colette ghostwrites for him.

Things take a turn when her first novel is the toast of Paris. Since they published it under her husband’s name, she has to fight for her right to freedom.

I haven’t seen this yet, but it’s been on my watch list for ages since it came out at a time I was too busy to catch it in theaters. 

There’s a good chance I’ll be watching it later this week, because after seeing the trailer again, I’m excited to check it out.

Colette
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Passport to Paris

I think there’s definitely a generation of us that all immediately wanted to jet off to Paris for a week of romance, fashion, and adventure after watching the Mary-Kate and Ashley classic Passport to Paris.

It’s dated, and there’s not much of a plot, but a lot of the fashion is coming back into style.

Now the only thing I need is a hot French date to pull up on a moped for a date around Paris, but until then it’s fun to re-watch this fun film.

Passport to Paris
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Charade

Okay, I can’t believe I’m admitting this, but this is one of the few Audrey Hepburn films I still need to watch. 

Since it’s a favorite of Blair Waldorf’s, you know it’s got to be amazing.

The reviews are all stellar, so this is already being downloaded as I write. I’ll update this in a few weeks once I get some free time on the flight to Paris to watch it.

Charade
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Julie & Julia

Watching Julie/Julia will quickly have you craving French food, so plan to either order in or make your own attempt at making a Julia Child recipe.

This is a fun watch with a great cast, perfect for hyping up all the classic dishes you should try in France.

Julie & Julia
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Made in Paris

For some seriously retro Parisian vibes, check out Made in Paris

I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, but it looks like such a fun film.

Plus I’m already obsessed with fashion just from watching the trailer. I really can’t wait for some of these styles to come back in style!

Made In Paris
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My Old Lady

Maggie Smith, Kevin Kline, and Kristin Scott Thomas, seriously, what’s not to love about this cast, especially with such a uniquely French plot?

I haven’t watched it yet, but it’s already on my movie night queue as I gear up for Paris soon.

My Old Lady
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Madeline

If you’re looking for a fun movie to introduce your kids to Paris, look no further than Madeline.

You’ll follow Madeline as she adventures through Paris with her school friends. 

I used to love these books growing up, and remember the film that came out was super adorable.

Madeline
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2 Days in Paris

Follow this couple from New York. He’s American, she’s French, so anyone who’s had the relationship dynamic knows some things get lost in translation.

They go to Paris to see her family, and naturally it’s not smooth sailing.

This is a really fun rom-com to watch curled up with a bottle of wine.

2 Days In Paris
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The Last Time I Saw Paris

With a Hollywood legend like Elizabeth Taylor starring, you know The Last Time I Saw Paris is sure to be a great watch. 

I haven’t seen it yet, but my grandma says it’s a classic and said it had to be on my list of the best movies set in Paris.

The Last Time I Saw Paris
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Le Week-end

I had never heard of this movie before I began researching for this article and after watching the trailer I’m dying to watch it.

It’s about an older couple who decide to take a second honeymoon to Paris.

This film looks absolutely adorable, and definitely makes me hope I find a relationship one day with someone I can grow old having fun with.

Le Week-End
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Gigi

This MGM classic based on the novel by Colette has wonderful tunes, and is a classic.

The plot follows two courtesans as they raise an orphan to follow in their footsteps.

It turns out young Gigi has quite the rebellious spirit, as she learns what it means to be a woman in Paris at the turn of the century.

Gigi
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Irma La Douce

Wondering what the title “Irma La Douce’’ means?

You’re not alone, I googled it and here’s how it translates:  “Irma la Douce” is French for “Irma the Sweet”.

This is another film I haven’t caught yet, but with big Hollywood icon Billy Wilder directing, and Shirley MacLaine and Jack Lemmon starring, it’s got to be good!

Forget Paris

Recently this came up on my suggested watch list, so I gave it a shot since I like Billy Crystal.

This is the perfect date night movie. Grab snacks, a bottle of wine, curl up under a cozy blanket, and get ready to laugh.

Forget Paris
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The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Everyone loves a Disney movie, especially for family movie night. 

The Hunchback of Notre Dame doesn’t get nearly enough credit for how good it is. If you haven’t seen it in a while, pop it on while you pack.

Or be really daring and try watching the vintage version starring Charles Laughton.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame
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The Hunchback of Notre Dame
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The Aristocats

Speaking of under-rated Disney movies, The Aristocats, about a family of Parisian cats, is another perfect movie for family date night.

My sisters and I used to love this movie as kids, and now my nephew can’t get enough of it.

The Aristocats
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Personal Shopper

If you love scary movies, Personal Shopper is the go-to movie on this list for your Paris movie night.

Kristen Stewart plays a chic personal shopper waiting for a sign from her recently deceased brother.

That’s when things get freaky… guess you’ll have to watch it to see what happens next.

Personal Shopper
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Birds of Paradise

This is a bit of a psychedelic drama about dancers at Paris’ famous Opera Garnier.


It’s definitely got major Black Swan vibes, and is a fun watch for a girls night.

Birds of Paradise
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Final Portrait

Head to Paris in the 1960s to watch an unlikely friendship between an American writer and an art loving Lord.

I really love how Final Portrait shows the chaos of the creative process as the writer poses for a portrait by the temperamental Lord.

Geoffrey Rush is absolutely fantastic in this, don’t miss it.

Final Portrait
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The Science of Sleep

This romantic fantasy from the director of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is absolutely delightful.

Both Charlotte Gainsbourg and Gael Garcia Bernal are charming as neighbors who have chemistry, even though one of them lives a life of fantasy.

The Science of Sleep
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Paris Je T’aime

Follow 18 vignettes around Paris, all with the central theme of love.

With an insane cast of actors and directors, Paris Je T’aime was a big deal when it came out—well, at least in cities. It didn’t really seem to reach middle America.

If you haven’t seen this yet, give it a chance. Most of the stories are in English, though there are a couple spoken in French with subtitles.

Paris, Je T’aime
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Les Miserables

If you haven’t read the book in school, chances are you’ve at least heard of the famous musical Les Miserables since it was in theaters a few years ago.

I still love the stage production best, but if you’re in a pinch and want to learn a bit about the French Revolution, download Les Miserables.

Best Movies Set Paris in French

movies about paris in french 2

La Vie En Rose

If you’ve never seen La Vie En Rose, you need to stop what you’re doing and download it now. 

This story about legendary singer Edith Piaf is absolutely stunning.

It won all the awards the year it came out, so don’t let the fact it’s subtitled deter you. 

This is a must-see movie set in Paris!

La Vie en Rose
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Coco Before Chanel

Everyone knows the French luxury brand Chanel, but how many people know the story behind it?

Watch this to learn who Coco was before she began her revolutionary brand, while reveling in all the gorgeous vintage French fashion on display.

If you have an interest in fashion, you’ll hardly even notice the subtitles after a while.

Coco Before Chanel
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The Concert

I haven’t seen this one yet, but one of my friends in France recommended it.

The Concert follows a man who was once the conductor of the Bolshoi Orchestra, now working as the janitor, because he hired Jewish players.

One day while he’s working, he overhears that they have invited the orchestra to play the Chatelet Theater in Paris. 

Seeing his chance to conduct again, he gets the orchestra back together for one last performance.

The Concert (Le Concert)
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Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life

In France Serge Gainsbourg is a musical icon, in the United States I bet maybe half the population has heard of him (maybe less).

But chances are you’ve definitely heard of at least one of his famous lovers, Jane Birkin and Bridgette Bardot.

Watch this gorgeous film to learn all about Gainsbourg’s extraordinary life.

Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life (English Subtitled)
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Holy Motors


I still remember how obsessed I was with the trailer for Holy Motors when it came out. I definitely went way out of my way to catch this in an indie theater downtown.

The movie follows a man who transforms while going to different “jobs” around Paris in a limo.

It was easily one of the strangest, most unique films you’ll ever see. It’s brilliant!

Holy Motors
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Paris

Sometimes it takes learning you’re going to die to give you a whole new outlook on life.

Juliette Binoche is fabulous in this, and really draws you in, even with the language barrier (don’t worry, there are subtitles).

Paris (English Subtitled)
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Eiffel

This movie promises you’ll never look at the French skyline the same again, and I have to agree.

I bet you will too, after seeing this beautiful and inspiring story about Gustave Eiffel and his personal life around the time he came up with his infamous tower.

Eiffel
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A Breath Away

If you’re into the end of the world movies, you’ll love A Breath Away.

The plot follows a family’s attempt to save their compromised daughter, who is confined to a medical tank after a disastrous fog overtakes Paris. 

A Breath Away
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Someone, Somewhere

When I became addicted to the French TV show Call My Agent last year, my friends in Antibes were so excited to send other recommendations my way.

Someone, Somewhere was on all of my friends’ recommendation lists.

This romantic drama/comedy is an enchanting look at the magic in the timing of life.

Someone Somewhere
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Elles

A French friend recommended this film to me. After seeing the trailer, I’m really excited to watch this once I find some time.

Juliette Binoche looks like she gives an incredible performance and the story line looks both interesting and sexy.

This definitely is a movie to watch with a cocktail in hand.

Elles
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Marguerite

Loosely inspired by the life of Florence Foster Jenkins, Marguerite follows a wealthy French woman as she follows her dream to become a brilliant singer.

You’ll notice in the trailer she doesn’t exactly have a magical voice.

I haven’t seen this yet, but am very excited to watch it on my way to Paris next month.

Marguerite (English Subtitled)
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Last Thoughts

Paris Movies Ally in Paris 2017

Creating this list of Paris movies has me so excited to set aside time soon for a little movie marathon before my trip to France next month.

Let me know in the comments below what your favorite movie set in Paris is!

 

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