Paris Movie Walks, nominated Travel Guide Book of the year, now available for your iPhone!

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Paris Blues

"Sydney Poitier and Diahann Caroll on the steps of rue Chappe in the movie Paris Blues"

Where Paris Blues was Shot

This is the movie that got away: the only major Hollywood movie with a Parisian theme that I failed to include in the book. At the time, it was not available on DVD, not even in the US, so I had no choice but to give it a bye.

Later, I caught the final two minutes a couple of times by chance on TCM, and although it was too late to cover the film for the book, I looked frantically each time for the next repeat in the channel’s schedules – everything on TCM is repeated – only to find that it would be screened next on a Thursday morning three weeks hence at 3 o’clock in the morning.

Finally, I found the film, again by chance – on YouTube. I did not even know they were showing films on YouTube, but it seems it is a real paradise for lovers of old movies. (Check it out if you don’t believe me.)

Paris Blues is certainly an old movie (it was made in 1961) and, quite frankly, best enjoyed as a period piece.

Its main interest – apart from the original . . . → Read More About Hollywood’s Love Affair with Paris: Paris Blues

Hugo Cabret

"Place Edouard in Paris"

Where Hugo Cabret was Shot

Hugo Cabret, Martin Scorsese’s latest film, is set in Paris, but nearly the entire movie was shot on a studio stage, in the spirit of George Méliès, one might say, on whose life story much of the film is based. (The silent movie pioneer, a master of the “artificial”, the fantastic and surreal, really did operate a toy shop in the Gare de Montparnasse for several years after WWI.)

The puzzle is not so much why Scorsese preferred to recreate 1920s Paris in a studio but why he bothered to shoot on location at all, and then only for scenes that are of secondary importance to the narrative and that do not enrich or embroider the film’s visual impact in any meaningful way.

The two scenes in question were shot on Place Edouard VII – we can clearly see the king’s statue behind the two youthful protagonists – and, just fifty metres away, on Square de l’Opéra Louis Jouvet where Hugo and Isabelle sneak into a cinema.

Scorsese could easily enough have done for these two scenes what he did for all the others: shoot them on a . . . → Read More About Hollywood’s Love Affair with Paris: Hugo Cabret

More Midnight in Paris

"The Eiffel Tower at night seen from the Champ de Mars"

This Guest Review is brought to you by Cheap Flights UK
There are hundreds of movies about Paris, so you may think that the subject has been overdone. But as the end of the year approaches an interesting and unusual take on the city has been presented in cinematic form. You will have heard of it – “Midnight in Paris” is the darling of the reviews and has been heralded by the press and the public as a masterpiece.

The beginning of the film is not unusual. The main character, Gil, catches a flight to Paris with his fiancée, Inez, and her parents.

The disenchanted writer spends the start of his holiday listening to Inez’s old friend Paul, who is constantly contradicting people, and generally being a pain.

Paris loses its appeal, until….suddenly his holiday is improved when at stroke of midnight he is transported back into the 1920s, where he meets a plethora of celebrities starting with F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein.

Woody Allen treats these celebrity characters with the respect they deserve and the film is one of the best of its kind. The story line may seem nonsensical, but with the light . . . → Read More About Hollywood’s Love Affair with Paris: More Midnight in Paris

La Dame de Fer

"Eiffel Tower seen from Trocader"

La Dame de Fer de Paris

La Dame de Fer – always the star whenever a movie is shot in Paris
This Thursday’s submission to Travel Photo Thursday initiated by Nancie at Budget Travelers Sandbox . Have a look at her blog and check out what other travel bloggers and photographers . . . → Read More About Hollywood’s Love Affair with Paris: La Dame de Fer

A Stroll by the Seine

"Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris" . . . → Read More About Hollywood’s Love Affair with Paris: A Stroll by the Seine