There was a selection of Spanish TV shows, there were also top British shows with a high rating, but the conquest of European screen art is not over yet – now we are watching French TV shows. And “French” does not mean “about love.”
The selection will include stories about dismemberment and ritual murders, projects in the spirit of philosophical reasoning and the future and death, a couple of cool comedies with a painfully beating level of realism. And also a series on historical events with very beautiful costumes and decorations.
BEST FRENCH TV SERIES
Well, if someone is lazy in a long movie, but wants something near Paris, there is a selection of good French films.
- Grade7.4 / 7.5 (Kinopoisk / IMDb)
- genre crime, detective, drama, action
- CountryFrance, USA
- StarringOmar Sy, Ludivine Sagnier, Hervé Pierre
- DirectorLouis Leterrier, Hugo Gelen, Louis Bernard
- Duration45 minutes
- Premiere date January 8, 2021
- ScenarioGeorge Kay, Francois Yuzan, Florent Meyer
If Sherlock Holmes were not an English detective, but a French thief, then probably his name would be Arsene Lupine.
This hero of classical French literature knew Jiu-Jitsu, knew Latin and Ancient Greek, was a real gentleman, and even worked as a private detective a couple of times, investigating very complex cases. True, unlike the Englishman in a hunting hat, Lupine was an empathic and emotional person. And by the way, there will be no Arsene Lupine in the series.
But there will be Assan Diop – the son of an emigrant who lost his father, who was unjustly accused of stealing. Twenty-five years after the tragedy, the adult Assan is inspired by the novels about Arsene Lupine and steals the necklace of Marie Antoinette and a wealthy family. Once it was this family that destroyed the life of Diopus the Elder, so Assan’s motive is quite obvious – Dad will be avenged.
In the biography of Lupine, there is also a story about the necklace of the French queen, but the famous thief took revenge not for his father, but for his mother, whom the owners of the precious trinket constantly humiliated. And Arsen was only six years old at the time of the theft, and then he was accused of the disappearance of the necklace as Lupine’s mother, who died soon after. In short, the alignment was a little different, but the series took over the essence correctly – (occasionally) the noble thief enchants the audience with his intelligence and ingenuity.
- Grade7.8 / 7.9 (KinoPoisk / IMDb), 0 / 7.3 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genredrama, romance, military, biography, history
- CountryFrance, Canada
- StarringGeorge Blagden, Alexander Vlachos, Tai Runyan
- director Thomas Vincent, Richard Clarke
- Duration52 minutes
- StudioCanal drama
- Premiere dateNovember 16, 2015
- ScenarioSimon Mirren, David Wolstencroft, Andrew Brumfield
The Three Musketeers also had a story with the missing royal jewelry, and the events take place there during the reign of Louis XIII. The monarch did not trust his wife at all, and before his death, he was going to protect the eldest son of Louis XIV from the excessive influence of his mother. But it did not work out, and the regency under the new four-year-old king still went to the very Anna of Austria, for whose pendants D’Artagnan had to chase.
Anna did not always cope with caring for her son and the country successfully: until the age of twenty, the future Louis the Great (aka the sun king) fell ill with smallpox and typhoid fever, almost drowned in the palace pond, and developed a tumor in his chest. And almost a civil war broke out at the court. But regency is an eternal business, and when Louis XIV was twenty-two, the young king called a council of state and announced, that now he will rule himself.
Soon the monarch, painful in childhood, conquered part of the land from the Netherlands, gathered a circle of close associates no worse than that of King Arthur, and at the same time fell in love with the people because he did not forget about the third estate, developed trade, industry, and science with art. Well, everyone was a good guy. And who knew that the result of his seventy years of reign would be the complete economic exhaustion of France. After watching Game of Thrones as a child, the sun king moved the court from Paris to Versailles, introduced strict etiquette, and took all possible measures to achieve absolute monarchy.
He was going to break with Rome, forced two hundred thousand Protestants to emigrate, severely punished for any doubt about the boundaries of his own power – the CST is not an obstacle to the crown. And this historical series will tell how Louis the Great, at the peak of his greatness, arranged a large-scale move and organized a court, which all the monarchs-colleagues envied. Intrigues, betrayals, secrets, and political multi-moves, which used to spread throughout Paris, now found themselves locked in the territory of the former royal summer house – less space, more concentration.
10. TO THE CALL OF SORROW
- Grade7.6 / 8.1 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genre horror, fantasy, drama, detective
- StarringAnne Cosigny, Clotilde Esme, Frederic Pierrot
- DirectorFabrice Gobert, Frederic Goupil, Frederic Mermou
- Duration52 minutes
- StudioStudio canal
- Premiere dateNovember 26, 2012
- ScenarioFabien Adda, Fabrice Gobert, Colin Abert
The death of loved ones is a difficult topic and requires tact, but this series is not afraid of difficulties and not only climbs into the heads of those who have lost someone but also answers their pleas for the return of their loved ones. Camilla died four years ago – in a school bus accident. Half of the town was at the funeral. And now the schoolgirl reappears in her parents’ house – she does not remember what happened to her and just wants to return to normal life.
And parents, whom the universe has endowed with a miracle to hug their child again, suddenly realize that happiness is happiness, but such miracles in those around them will cause not joy, but horror and panic. And this is in an abstract embodiment, and specifically, someone may want to take a shovel and return the girl to the ground.
Camilla is not the only miracle in a gloomy town where zombies, a maniac, and deer roam the streets. Each episode is dedicated to new resurrected characters and their families. And not all living relatives are ready to accept relatives from the past – sometimes it is better for the dead to remain dead.
- Grade6.7 / 7.5 (Kinopoisk / IMDb)
- genre horror, drama
- StarringVictoire du Bois, Lucy Bougenat, Tiefen Daviot
- DirectorSamuel Bodin
- Duration50 minutes
- StudioEmpreinte digitale
- Premiere date13 September 2019
- ScenarioSamuel Bodin, Quoc Dang Chan
Since childhood, Emma Larsimon suffered from nightmares in which the girl was haunted by a demonic entity – Marianne. With age, Emma found a way to fight back the horrors – the heroine began to write stories about the brave Lizzie Lark, who used the witch for chops. The method turned out to be not only effective but also profitable: Emma became famous as a writer and monetized childhood trauma.
There would be a happy ending to play another course about success and motivation, but Emma is not up to that: Marianne is returning to a woman’s life, and this time not in nightmares, but in reality. The close main character is now also involved in the battle with evil, and a lot of blood will be shed
- Grade6.8 / 7.4 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genre thriller, drama, crime
- StarringCarole Bouquet, Fred Dough, Manon Azem
- DirectorAlexander Lauren
- Duration52 minutes Total
- StudioSeptembre Productions
- Premiere date28 Aug 2017
- ScenarioGregoire Demason, Nicholas Jean
The serial killer, nicknamed Praying Mantis, has been in solitary confinement for twenty-five years now, yearning for his son. And then something happens that many maniacs could dream of – the “Silence of the Lambs” happens. An inspector knocks on Mantis’s cell with the news: a copycat killer has appeared, the whole of France is abuzz with bloody headlines, the people panic and demand the capture of the criminal.
The Praying Mantis’s handwriting was, of course, beautiful: the woman killed with special sadism, and the bodies of the victims were exposed as in theatrical poses. Soon there was a whole museum of cruelty, which the new killer decided to expand with his exhibits. The police cannot cope and turn to the Praying Mantis for help. The maniac is ready to play for the opposite side, but with her own condition – the woman chooses her son as a partner, who grew up without a mother and hid his relationship with her from everyone.
Endorsed by Stephen King: The horror master praised the series for its fantasy and masterly brutality.
7. RED RIVERS
- Grade6.8 / 6.8 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genre thriller, crime, detective
- CountryFrance, Belgium, Germany
- StarringOlivier Marshal, Erica Saint, Michelangelo Marchese
- DirectorIvan Fegiveres, Olivier Barma, Manuel Bursignac
- Duration60 minutes
- StudioMaze Pictures
- Premiere date13 September 2018
- ScenarioJean-Christophe Granger, Olivier Prieure
In the previous project, a mother and son undertook to investigate brutal murders, and in this series, a teacher of the police academy and his best graduate are sent into the dark depths. The French province here does not look like a paradise entwined with vines – romantics who dream of a honeymoon somewhere in Provence should shake off their expectations right away.
The police are going to investigate ritual murders, and the smell here is not sparkling or fresh croissants, but sectarianism and religious fanaticism. France also needs real detectives.
The series is a remake of the 2000 film of the same name, where Vincent Cassel and Jean Reno wandered around the monasteries and the Alps in search of the killer.
- Grade8.2 / 7.4 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genre drama, crime
- StarringIsabelle Nanty, Tom Villa, Aurelien Vic
- DirectorNicholas Guisteau, Frederic Bert, Julien Sery
- StudioJLA Productions
- Premiere dateOctober 2, 2016
- ScenarioMarie Vinois, Clelia Constantine
Legal dramas are often hard to watch: few places break as many destinies as in a courthouse. One wrong decision of a man with a hammer, and someone’s son or father, someone’s wife or mother has torn away from the family and deprived of the right to a carefree future. But judges are not robots, and their decisions are not a clearly spelled out program that does not allow failures. Somewhere emotions play, somewhere the stamp of personal experience is imposed on the verdict, somewhere the defenders of the wrong side turn out to be more cunning and convincing.
And these are all only intrahuman factors, but there are also bribes, personal connections, and pressure from the authorities. Well, how can one generally believe in justice and the judicial system – here Themis hysterically broke her scales. Fortunately, not everything is so bleak: there are also lawyers like Gabriel Munchowski.
This woman takes on the affairs of those who, in her opinion, condemned unfairly, and the lawyer wanted to spit on threats, the law, and her own safety – Munchovski’s justice is the most expensive. A sweet, at first glance, blonde undertakes to work on mistakes for her colleagues, and she does it with such energy that she also wants to run urgently and raise justice from her knees.
- Grade7.5 / 7.6 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genrethriller, crime
- StarringTomer Sisle, Hélène de Foujrols, Janig Samo
- DirectorMona Ashash
- Duration52 minutes
- StudioBeaubourg Stories
- Premiere date14 september 2018
- ScenarioClelia Constantine, Clotilde Jaymin, Nicholas Clement
A worthy project in the spirit of “Castle”, “Mentalist”, “Dr. Harrow” and partially even “Lucifer”. A charming criminologist with caustic jokes, he easily investigates the most difficult cases in the company of a strict partner. The duo is not original, the formula is not new, but it all works. On the rusty rails of all familiar detective schemes, it seemed that you would not go further than sixes in the audience ratings. But “Balthazar” quickly gained recognition, which means that everyone who loves crime stories can already look forward to another portion of juicy investigations.
4. TO LIFE
- Grade6.2 / 6.5 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genrefantasy, drama, crime, detective
- StarringIvan Attal, Garance Marillier, Nils Schneider
- DirectorTom Kaye, Manuel Shapira
- Duration60 minutes
- Premiere dateMay 03, 2018
- ScenarioTom Kaye, Sebastian Mounier
“At the Call of Sorrow” (and the British “In the Flesh” partly too) gave an answer to the question of what would happen if the deceased returned to their families. “Towards life” goes further: here they ponder what will happen if people stop aging and dying altogether. There is a big holiday in the world of the series: the birthday of a Japanese woman – the lady is one hundred and sixty-nine years old, and she looks nineteen.
And the policeman Darius Ashram is already one hundred and nineteen, but the detective does not want to celebrate. Yes, he doesn’t want anything at all – more than a century was enough to try everything interesting. An ideally magnificent world without cancer, wrinkles and coffins is actually full of problems: zero mortality provokes overpopulation and lack of resources, and procreation becomes a dubious idea because any kind is already immortal. There are many complaints about the model of overly healthy humanity of the future, and most of these claims in the show’s universe are made by young people.
They are not yet thirty, life has not yet lost its taste, the soul desperately wants to enjoy the colors of the world. But the world has faded, and the crowds of old people who govern the planet do not care about the nature of the younger generation. This is where the problems begin: first, the police discover the place of the mass suicide of adolescent sectarians, and then seven people are found on the beach.
All are killed in the same way, and Detective Darius Ashram suggests that the new victims are related to suicide cultists. And one of the former members of the cult becomes the partner of a police officer – they have an eternity of time, so you don’t have to rush. and the crowds of old people who govern the planet do not care about the nature of the younger generation.
This is where the problems begin: first, the police discover the place of the mass suicide of adolescent sectarians, and then seven people are found on the beach. All are killed in the same way, and Detective Darius Ashram suggests that the new victims are related to suicide cultists. And one of the former members of the cult becomes the partner of a police officer – they have an eternity of time, so you don’t have to rush. and the crowds of old people who govern the planet do not care about the nature of the younger generation.
This is where the problems begin: first, the police discover the place of the mass suicide of adolescent sectarians, and then seven people are found on the beach. All are killed in the same way, and Detective Darius Ashram suggests that the new victims are related to suicide cultists. And one of the former members of the cult becomes the partner of a police officer – they have an eternity of time, so you don’t have to rush.
3. BRIEFLY SPEAKING
- Grade8.0 / 8.2 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- StarringKian Kozhandi, Alice David, Beranger Krieff
- DirectorBruno Mushio, Kian Kojandi
- Duration2 minutes
- studio Box Productions
- Premiere date august 29, 2011
- ScenarioKian Kojandi, Bruno Mushio
In the meantime, immortality is not corked in a bottle according to the recipes of Severus Snape, in the XXI century, there is no resource more valuable than time. And the creators of “In short” used it: each episode here lasts a couple of minutes. It seems that in two minutes even the credits cannot be packed, but no: in each episode of “In short” there was a whole story about an infantile thirty-year-old guy.
The hero spends all his time on the Internet or in bed with random girls, so from a serious life a guy only has a chance to pick up something viral or die alone and turn his face into someone’s “Whiskas”. The two-minute episodes manage not only to reveal the character of the protagonist (and there are all fifty shades of laziness, infantilism, and selfishness) but also to acquaint the audience with “the very girl” whom the title character meets at a party. “The same” is the only one who does not succumb to the charm of a hero who lives according to Pushkin’s behest “we love less – we like more”.
Like, be disgusting, and you will be happy – the advice may be so-so, but for some reason, it worked before the “one”. But now the hero’s life will become a little less inhibited and atrophic – you will have to strain to see “that” again and see reciprocity in her.
2. KID KENKEN
- Grade7.5 / 7.4 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- genrecomedy, crime, detective
- StarringAlain Delaye, Lucy Caron, Bernard Pruveau
- DirectorBruno Dumont
- Duration52 minutes episode (416 minutes in total)
- StudioTV5 Monde
In general, comedy films from France are always about a special atmosphere and unpredictable jokes (and we have a separate selection about such a movie). So: dismembered corpses hidden in the stomachs of slaughtered cows – doesn’t that sound like a part of a great comedy? Maybe it doesn’t sound, but the comedy is really good. It was filmed by a French director, who was awarded four times in Cannes, and in the biography of Bruno Dumont, he worked as a philosophy teacher.
In his films, the master prefers to shoot non-professional actors – the vector is taken for realism, so, apart from dead cows with a dismembered head, “Baby Kenken” is a project filled with thorns of the social agenda and the awkwardness of real life. The suburban zoocorror is investigated by two ridiculous detectives and a gang of local boys, whose leader is baby Kenken, a guy with a hare lip and a hearing aid. Kenken is an everyday racist, his gang is petty hooligans, and in the series, you will have to laugh at old age, mental disorders, religion, and total idiocy inscribed in the human gene code.
And here comes the second paradox of the show. Dead cows stuffed with dead people and hidden in a WWII bunker is a comedy. And jokes on the sick topics of every humanist and philanthropist are not evil cynicism or soullessness, but a gentle black comedy made with love for their imperfect characters. And with love for the whole ridiculous, awkward, and wonderfully ugly world. made with love for its imperfect characters.
And with love for the whole ridiculous, awkward, and wonderfully ugly world. made with love for its imperfect characters. And with love for the whole ridiculous, awkward, and wonderfully ugly world.
- Grade7.2 / 7.2 (KinoPoisk / IMDb)
- StarringTheo Fernandez, Carmen Kassowitz, Pablo Cobo
- DirectorSimon Buisson
- Duration230 minutes Total
- Premiere date13 March 2020
- ScenarioSimon Buisson, Jean-Charles Pogam, Victor Rodenbach
A series with frantic dynamics and again an unusually short meter – twenty-minute episodes outside of sitcoms and animated series are rare. And with such a duration, it would be wasteful to talk about the plot for a long time.
The main character is a very smart guy who, thanks to his brain Jimmy Neutron, enters a prestigious study program at an elite university. Prestige, prestige, and adaptation to the team have not been canceled. And the team turns out to be not the most friendly: they do not want to accept the newcomer Lux, his on-board computer in the skull looks too cool against the background of the talents of the other students.
Lux is being bullied, the guy gets offended and applies his genius where he doesn’t need to: the hero hacks into the gadgets of his classmates and offenders from senior years. And soon Lux does not have time to think about the moral side of this act: the consequences of hacking quickly overtake the young genius, and the guy turns from a hunter into a victim.