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Five films or series to watch on Netflix to help boost your French

Watching with subtitles can help improve your comprehension skills

Watching French films online is an enjoyable way to boost language skills Pic: MAXSHOT.PL / Shutterstock

Streaming services are a treasure trove for improving your French, with hundreds of French films and TV programmes to choose from in every genre. 

This month, our recommendations include the Tour de France docu-series which follows riders through the gruelling race across the mountains, as well as films starring some of the country’s biggest stars. 

To work on your French, the best way to enjoy these films is with French audio and subtitles. 

However, English subtitles can also be helpful and will allow you to better understand the translation process. 

Watching films and TV can be an easier way to practise your listening skills than radio because it gives you visual context to better understand what is going on. 

1. Tour de France: Au cœur du peloton 

As the Tour de France continues to cross the country, now might be the perfect time to tune into this Netflix documentary, called Tour de France: Unchained in English.

The documentary is largely in French, with some interviews in other languages, including English. 

It offers a shocking insight into the realities of the tour and therefore is perhaps not for the faint-hearted, with the first episode featuring a serious crash. 

Camera crews followed several teams throughout the 2022 race. The series has been compared to the Formula One series which previously proved so popular on the streaming platform. 

Read also: Six French films to watch in June

2. Les Saveurs du Palais

Originally titled Les Saveurs du Palais, you may find this film on Netflix under the title Haute Cuisine. 

The comedy-drama is based on the true life of Danièle Mazet-Delpeuch and follows the story of how she was unexpectedly appointed the private chef of the French president. 

Having grown up in Dordogne, where she gained a reputation as a cook, Francois Mitterrand approached her to become his personal cook leading her to become the first female chef to a French president, from 1988-1990. 

Read also: Try these eight daily life hacks to improve your French

3. Un homme idéal 

Starring Pierre Niney, who won a César for his title role in the biopic Yves Saint Laurent, Un homme idéal revolves around a writer who puts his name to a dead man’s work. 

The work quickly becomes a hit, which leads to someone uncovering the secret. 

Described as a suspense thriller, the film keeps you on the edge of your seat as you wait to find out the fate of Mathieu, the thieving author. 

4. Deux Moi 

With an all-star cast including Pierre Niney (again) and Camille Cottin, this film tackles the subject of loneliness in France’s huge cities. 

Rémy, played by breakout star Francois Civil, is at the centre of this film as he goes about his life in an unfulfilling job. 

Meanwhile, his neighbour Melanie, played by Ana Girardot, is so busy with her job that the pair have never actually met, despite living on the same floor. 

5. Mauvaises Herbes

This is a heartwarming tale about a man who makes money by scamming people before turning his life around when he begins to mentor troubled teenagers. 

Throughout the film, we see flashbacks from Wael’s life, which helps us to piece together his story and how he came to be in the situation he finds himself in.

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