One of this series of short movies’ major theme is love. Love that links two human beings, love that happens magically when the two lovers meet, and, of course, love for Paris! Every district (there are twenty “arrondissements” in Paris) is a character of the movie, which makes Paris a recurring actor, with a part to play in every story. Here is an overview of the different locations shown in the film.
1st district (Tuileries)
In the short: A man gets out of the Louvre museum and goes straight to the metro station Tuileries (line 1). Once inside the metro, he starts exchanging glances with a woman on the facing platform, who is kissing her husband at the same time. The latter catches the glances and gets mad. He goes to the other platform and starts pummeling him, leaving him lying on the ground, all covered in postcards of Mona Lisa.
In Paris: The metro station Tuileries is on the first lines of the Parisian subway. The paintings on the walls refer to the metro’s cultural history, along with the history of the 20th century, with the thematic boards each dedicated to a decade. The station Tuileries will allow you to reach the Tuileries gardens adjoining the Louvre museum. The famous Parisian museum is also easily accessible from the station. Go and enjoy its impressive art collection!
2nd district (Place des Victoires)
In the short: A woman is crying, mourning the death of her son, in her Place des Victoires apartment. She suddenly hears a voice: it’s her son. She leaves her apartment and starts chasing him in the street. Then, she ends up falling down on her knees, in front of Notre-Dame-des-Victoires basilica. There, on the other side, she sees her dead son, and her still-alive husband and daughter. She has to make up her mind: will she follow her son into the world of the dead, or will she remain with the living? Finally, she chooses her daughter and husband, leaving her son behind, who returns to the afterlife.
In Paris: The Place des Victoires is a Parisian square, first built in honour of King Louis XIV. It is one of the five royal Parisian squares, with the Place des Vosges and the Place Vendôme. It is lively, especially during summer, and rich in stores. In the heart of the 2nd district, you might also want to visit the Notre-Dame-des-Victoires basilica, near the Place des Victoires. It was built in the 17th century. It is one of the major basilicas in Paris.
3rd district (Quartier des Enfants Rouges)*
In the short: In the evening, during a party in a flat in the borough of the Enfants Rouges, Liz calls a drug dealer. Then comes a young man, Ken, but Liz doesn’t have enough money to pay him. So they go down in the street in order to withdraw money from a cash dispenser. They walk around in the 3rd district, chatting together. They end up falling in love.
In Paris: This neighbourhood is named after the Hospice des Enfants Rouges, founded by Princess Margaret of Navarre, sister of King Francis 1st. It’s a nice and dynamic neighbourhood; you will enjoy pleasant walks on its shopping streets, especially during summer. There you will find the Square du Temple (“Du Temple garden”), one of the biggest Parisian gardens.
*Borough of the “Red Children.” The area was named after the colour of the garment the children of the hospice used to wear.
4th district (Le Marais)
In the short: Gaspard is a young photographer. He comes in a printer’s store in Le Marais. There, he makes eye contact with an apprentice, Elie. He’s immediately attracted; it’s almost love at first sight. Elie can’t really speak French, so the “conversation” sounds more like a monologue. Gaspard gives his phone number and leaves. Elie didn’t understand what happened, but he’s so confused he decides to chase him in the streets.
In Paris: The Marais is one of the most famous neighbourhoods in the capital: it is a very vibrant quarter, known for its cultural melting pot. You will discover the renowned Place des Vosges, one of Paris’s most ancient squares. In the middle of this square there is the small garden Louis XIII, where four fountains were built. You’ll also enjoy the Picasso Museum, which revolves around the life and the works of painter Pablo Picasso, and around the artists who were connected to him.
5th district (Quai Saint-Bernard)
In the short: In the sun, three teenagers are having fun, accosting some girls. Along the Seine, in the Tino Rossi garden, one of the boys, named François, catches the eye of a young woman, wearing a veil. He follows her up to the Great Mosque of Paris. She comes in, and he waits for her until she leaves. He sees her with her grandfather, with whom he starts a conversation. The old man suggests they walk a few steps together while talking.
In Paris: In the heart of the 5th district, this is where you will find the Saint-Bernard quay, looking just like Notre-Dame quays. It is the perfect place for strolling, especially during summer. The Great Mosque of Paris, France’s oldest mosque, built in 1926, is in the same district. It was founded by Si Kaddour Benghabrit. It is a major place for Parisian Muslims. Its minaret dominates the district, for it is 33 meters high.
Saint-Bernard quay, on the Seine River banks.
6th district (Latin Quarter)
In the short: Ben and Gina meet at the café Le Rostand, facing the Luxembourg garden. They are welcomed by the owner himself, who seems to know a lot about its customers’ tastes in wine. Ben and Gina have decided they should divorce after several years as a couple. They have to sign a few papers at the notary’s. Gina has met a young man, a professional cyclist, whereas Ben has come to announce that his new girlfriend is pregnant. What will you see on the menu of this short movie? Some personal attacks and gibes, for sure!
In Paris: The Latin Quarter is known by (almost) everyone who wishes to visit Paris. It extends over the 5th and the 6th districts. The heart is the Sorbonne. It was called “Latin” after the intensive use of Latin during courses in the medieval schools and universities settled in the neighbourhood. It is such a vibrant and bustling quarter, where it feels good to live. You will also enjoy the 61.78 acres wide Luxembourg garden. The garden is divided in two parts: the English and the British part. The Luxembourg garden also hosts the imposing Medici Fountain, the Orangerie Museum, and the Davioud Pavilion.
7th district (Eiffel Tower)
In the short: Young Jean-Claude is the scapegoat of his classmates. Once, he has to tell the story of his parents’ meeting. His father was a mime who worked at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. According to Jean-Claude, he had a miserable and solitary life until one day, after a misunderstanding, he’s held in custody, for one entire night. There he meets another sad mime, a woman, who is also remanded, and they fall madly in love!
In Paris: Nowadays, the Eiffel Tower is indivisible from the capital itself. The monument was built for the 1889 Exposition Universelle (“world fair”). It has become one of Paris’s emblems. The tower is 312 meters high (approximately 1,024 feet). In front of the Champ de Mars, you’ll go for a very nice walk in its splendid gardens.
8th district (La Madeleine)
In the short: In the middle of the night, on a bridge, a passerby witnesses a vampire attack. The eyewitness tries to hide, but the vampire has seen him in the dark and he is getting close to its prey. The vampire is a young lady who has apparently fallen in love with him. The young man, still in a state of shock, falls down the stairs. His head hits the ground and blood starts flowing out of it. The vampire gives him a drop of her blood so that he won’t die. Thus, the passerby is now a vampire too; it is now his turn to attack the young lady!
In Paris: La Madeleine is an inescapable area of Paris: there, you will find the house and office of the President of the French Republic, the Elysée palace. The Louis XVI garden is also situated in the 8th district: it comprises the Expiatory Chapel erected in memory of King Louis XVI and his wife Queen Marie-Antoinette. Inside this monument, there are statues embodying Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette themselves. And in front of one of these statues the King’s will before his execution is written. The hit of the show happens in the crypts, the place where the King was disinterred in front of the altar. However, the heart of the borough definitely is Madeleine church. The building perfectly represents the neoclassical style, with its covered gallery and its eight pillars in the frontage.
9th district (Pigalle)
In the short: Bob is wandering around in Pigalle, Paris’s red light district. He gets in a hostess bar. He’s accosted by a woman, Fanny, at the bar counter. After they’ve chatted and drunk together, he goes downstairs in a room to watch a “performance.” Suddenly, Fanny bursts in the room and tries to meddle in the erotic game. Bob and Fanny start quarrelling. Later on in the short movie, we see them together, arm in arm, walking in the streets of Pigalle, as if it all was a joke.
In Paris: Pigalle is world-famous for the Moulin Rouge cabaret, painted by Toulouse-Lautrec. It is where the music-hall trend was born, with its poster girl Mistinguett. The place is an unavoidable Parisian site. The shows are amazing! And since the quarter is flooded with tourists, you will also have the opportunity to attend the Divan du Monde performance venue.
10th district (Rue du Faubourg-Saint-Denis)
In the short: Thomas is a young blind man. He gets a call from his girlfriend Francine, who tells him she wants to break up. This is how the recollection starts: he looks back on his love story with Francine, through the streets of Paris, especially in the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, thanks to his “made-up” memories.
In Paris: The Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis is a former royal route sovereigns used to follow when they made their grand entrance in Paris. This street leads onto the Basilica of Saint-Denis, one of Paris’s most famous basilicas.* In 1966, it became a cathedral. The Basilica hosts the graves of 43 kings and 32 queens of France. It’s a masterpiece of Gothic art.
*Actually, the basilica is located in the town of Saint-Denis, in the French department of the Seine-Saint-Denis (department number: 93). The Basilica of Saint-Denis is easily accessible from the metro station Basilique Saint-Denis (line 13) and from the tram line station Basilique de Saint-Denis-Hôtel de Ville (tram line 1). The town of Saint-Denis adjoins the northern city gates of Paris.
12th district (Bastille)
In the short: A man is waiting for his wife in a restaurant, near the Place de la Bastille. His name is Sergio. He recalls some details about his wife, particularly her flaws, which gives him good reasons to put an end to their relationship. Nevertheless, when he’s about to break up with her, she tells him she’s suffering from a serious illness. He changes his mind and decides to stay with her until she dies.
In Paris: Bastille is a very popular neighbourhood, in the very centre of the 12th district, and the Place de la Bastille is its main square. It symbolizes the French Revolution, because it used to be the location of La Bastille fortress. The Port de l’Arsenal is only a few blocks away. This marina links the Canal Saint-Saint-Martin with the Seine River. You will walk along the banks and enjoy their quietness.
13th district (Porte de Choisy)
In the short: Monsieur Henny is a salesman specialized in haircare products. His boss tasks him with going around in the Chinese district, in the quarter La Dalle in Olympiades (metro line 14). But he’s not welcomed in this highly Asian neighbourhood.
In Paris: Nowadays, the 13th district is famous for its Asian borough. This vibrant neighbourhood is also known as “Parisian Chinatown.” The Bibliothèque Nationale de France (“National Library of France”) is located there. This area is an entry point in Paris. It is flooded with places you must go to.
14th district (Montsouris park)
In the short: Carole lives in the US, in Denver. She’s always been keen on French culture. She’s been learning French and saving some money for years, in order to travel there. And she’s finally here, in France! She’s at the margins of society, going alone on a trip, alone in her private life, she paces the streets, the cultural sites, the touristic restaurants. She sits on a bench in the park: she’s both extremely sad and extremely happy, all at the same time; for she is alive, after all.
In Paris: The park contemplates the 14th district. It is often compared to the Buttes-Chaumont Park, and it is 37 acres wide. There is a wide choice of plants there, and you can have a walk listening to the birds, particularly during summer. Indeed, a lot of species have chosen to live in Montsouris. The park is always full of people (especially when the weather is hot) and it is perfect for relaxing. It feels like an interlude of greenery and peacefulness in the heart of the city.
17th district (Plaine Monceau)
In the short: Claire meets an old man, Vincent, in a Parisian street. She came with her baby. The two grown-ups soon get on a fight, quarrelling about their visions of life, the use of language, about smoking, etc.
In Paris: The Plaine Monceau is an area in the 17th district. There, you will find the Cité des Fleurs (literally, the “Estate of Flowers”), a kind of village in the heart of the city, composed of very different houses, all covered in flowers (which explains the name of the place).
18th district (Montmartre)
In the short: A man has a hard time parking his car in Montmartre but he finally finds a spot. Once he’s parked, he’s seized by a feeling of anxiety and wonders about the fact that he’s been single for a very long time. But a woman suddenly faints in the middle of the street. He helps her. He’s attracted to her and later suggests they go and chat inside his car.
In Paris: Montmartre is the most renowned Parisian neighbourhood. It is the peak of the city, with a height of 130.03 meters. There, you will find the Sacré-Coeur Basilica, a beautiful and impressive church that overlooks the capital and its surroundings. Nevertheless, if you want to climb Montmartre Hill, you might want to know that the task won’t be easy: first, you’ve got to climb 222 stairs …
19th district (Place des Fêtes)
In the short: Hassan is attacked at the Place des Fêtes. Sophie, an emergency doctor, treats him. They’ve already bumped into each other in the underground car park where Hassan does the cleaning and Sophie parks her car. And Hassan asks her to meet him for a drink.
In Paris: The Parc des Buttes-Chaumont is in the 19th district. It is a public park in the north-eastern part of Paris. It is a 62-acre wide area, which makes it one of the biggest parks in Paris. The 19th district is like a huge greenery in the city, for it also comprises the Parc de la Villette, Paris’s biggest green space.
20th district (Père-Lachaise)
In the short: Frances and William are a couple of foreigners on a visit in Paris. For William, this trip was organized for their honeymoon, whereas for Frances, the purpose is not exactly the same. The situation generates some tensions inside their duet. They end up arguing during their visit of the cemetery Père-Lachaise. Frances leaves him there out of madness. William tries to hold her back but he falls down in front of Oscar Wilde’s grave. The British writer reveals himself to William and gives him some advice to get her back.
In Paris: The Père-Lachaise cemetery is the biggest cemetery in Paris, and maybe one of the most famous cemeteries in the world. Three and a half million visitors come there every year, which makes it the most visited cemetery in the world. Many celebrities from the past are buried in Père-Lachaise, along with personalities of the 20th and the 21st century. Among them: American singer Jim Morrison, French writer Honoré de Balzac, world-famous playwright Molière, French fable writer Jean de la Fontaine, etc.
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