From time to time I make recommendations of movies to watch. Today I watched two films (courtesy of Netflix), both of them French. Both are very good in my opinion.
The first was "The Hedgehog" (Le herisson) and is the story of several rich people and their concierge in an apartment house in Paris. The story begins with a precocious 11 year old girl revealing her plan to kill herself on her upcoming 12th birthday. Garance Le Guillermic is the charming pre-teen. She is a very smart and cute tyke who becomes more lovable as time moves along and the story evolves to the life of the concierge, or super, played by Josiane Balasko, and her attraction to a new Japanese tenant. The latter is played by Togo Igawa, who many of you may recognize from his roles in a number of American movies. Both SWMBO and I liked it a lot. The cast is excellent, the plot intricate but satisfying and there's a surprise ending that may shock you.
The second movie is as different as can be. It is titled Farewell (L'Affaire Farewell). It is a spy thriller about a Russian dissatisfied with his country's politics at the height of the Cold War and the young Frenchman he recruits to transfer secrets. The Serbian film director and actor Emir Kusturica plays the Russian, French movie star Guillaume Canet has the part of the naive young Frenchman. There is considerable tension as the secrets keep coming. Several American actors also are featured. It has a somewhat predictable ending with a bit of a twist but it's a movie that holds you in its grip.
So put them both in your Netflix queue, if you do that, or look for them in the foreign film section of your video store.