While US and British shows are often watched on Netflix, there are also non-English shows that are making viewers stand up and take notice and among them are those coming from France. Besides entertainment, these shows somewhat educate viewers, showing a slice of life in France though with a touch of light and dark undertones. Another reason of course is you get to brush up on your French (though there are subtitles). Here are five French shows to look out for on Netflix worth binge-watching.
Call My Agent (Dix Pour Cent)
This series is considered by critics as a hybrid of Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Office and Entourage. The series focuses on a group of talent agents working for a Paris-based agency called ASK. It looks at a day in the life of these agents at work trying to keep the agency alive and outside, looking into their personal lives when they are not looking out for their celebrity clients. Internationally acclaimed actors like Oscar Best Actor Jean Dujardin and Oscar nominee Juliette Binoche make appearances in some episodes. This well-written, character-driven show is touching and funny even and it is a great way to get to know big names in French cinema besides the two aforementioned actors.
The Hookup Plan (Plan Coeur)
This romantic-comedy series gives a look at the life of the 20-something crowd in Paris as they cope with the typical issues affecting their age group, most especially relationships. It stars Zita Hanrot, Sabrina Ouazani, and Marc Ruchmann. It focuses on Elsa (Hanrot) who is trying to move on after a breakup. Her friend Charlotte (Ouazani) tries to help by hiring a male escort (Ruchmann) to go out with Elsa. This plan would lead to unexpected results.
This bleak French miniseries is reminiscent of the British crime show Luther that stars Idris Elba. Former Bond Girl Carole Bouquet plays Jeanne, a convicted serial killer serving a life sentence who offers to help the police who are on the trail of a copycat killer who imitates her methods. It is a classic case of “seeting a thief to catch a thief.” There is one condition on this arrangement. She will aid the police, provided she is allowed to work with her son who is a police officer.
An original series from Netflix, the story is about a group of young friends who had a get together at a pretty Alpine chalet for a wedding near a largely abandoned village called Valmoline in Chamonix. Unfortunately, a landslide cut off the road in and out of the village, trapping them there with the residents. With no link to the outside world and totally isolated, they are forced to reconcile with secrets from the past.
A Very Secret Service
This is a comedy-drama series said to be like Mad Men. Set in the Cold War in the 1960’s, France’s position as a Great Power is at risk as it faces numerous challenges such as the independence movements of its colonies in Africa, not to mention upheavals in the home front with the rise of counterculture, feminism and New Wave cinema. The series pokes fun at the spy thrillers and the bureaucracy in the intelligence agency. The series stars Hugo Becker as Andre Merlaux who is an operative of French intelligence.