Movie Monday: The French Village of “Chocolat”

by hookedonhouses on May 10, 2009

Welcome to another Movie Monday, when I show you photos from a film that has plenty of eye candy. Today I’m treating you to the romantic drama “Chocolat.” Consider this my day-after-Mother’s-Day gift to all you moms out there. Even if charming French villages aren’t your thing, and the sight of Juliette Binoche as chocolatier Vianne whipping up her heavenly concoctions doesn’t thrill you, there’s always Johnny Depp to look at. In other words, this movie has something for everyone!

It’s 1959 in a small village in the South of France when Vianne and her daughter Anouk arrive in their bright red capes and start stirring things up.

Vianne buys the old patisserie in the town square for her new chocolate shop. The fact that she does so during Lent, when most villagers have given up sweets, doesn’t go over well. The Comte de Reynaud (Alfred Molina), especially, takes umbrage, and comes to the shop to confront Vianne:

Undeterred by the town’s chilly reception, Vianne sets to work on the shop, painting everything turquoise:

Open for business:

This hot chocolate she makes looks like hot fudge. You’d have to eat it with a spoon!

Working in the kitchen with her new friend and coworker (Lena Olin):

Totally gratuitous Johnny Depp photo, as the Irish “River Rat” Roux:

When Roux comes to town, Vianne is the only shopkeeper who will serve him. He shows his appreciation for her friendship by fixing her front door:

Vianne throws a party in the backyard for her landlady Armande’s birthday (Judi Dench):

I enjoyed all of the sets in this movie. On the DVD there is an interview with the production designer who explains that they used a stone-walled French village from the 10th city for the exteriors.

Here are some shots of the local beauty shop and cafe:

Alfred Molina plays the local “baddie”–the Comte de Reynaud, who rules the village with an iron fist. The sets for his house and mayoral office, created on a soundstage in England, were beautiful, too:

Love the fireplace in his kitchen:

In the end, Vianne wins the village over, of course–and Roux, too.

Visit my TV/Movie Houses page for links to all the others I’ve featured, from Sabrina to Brideshead Revisited.

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Janet Doherty May 10, 2009 at 8:26 pm

Oh the transformation of their shop is just too much…oh to have the money to create something so beautiful! France is just such an amazing place with such history!
I will have to check out the movie..I has always wanted to watch it …now I have to :)
Janet

Janet Doherty’s last blog post..Mother’s Day Cheer

velvet and linen May 10, 2009 at 9:39 pm

Hi Julia.
Did you see the movie “I love you man?”
They have a little on going joke about this movie.
Chocolat really was a wonderful sensual adventure.
I enjoyed your take on it!

xo
Brooke

velvet and linen’s last blog post..mom

Andrea May 10, 2009 at 9:46 pm

Julia,

It’s Mother’s Day and I’m doing all the things I love to do, but haven’t had time for lately. First, I painted our hallway leading upstairs (with Alan’s help). We used Sherwin Williams, Whole Wheat. We finished that, with the exception of the hand rail, which I think we are going to have to replace. The second thing I wanted to to do was catch up on your blog. I must admit it feels like home. And, Happy Belated Birthday. I knew it was coming and then everything got crazy with Alan’s mom. I think I’ll rent Chocolat. It looks like my kind of movie. Andrea

AnNicole@OurSuburbanCottage May 10, 2009 at 9:56 pm

Again, yet another movie I need to own. I think I need to start making a list :). I don’t know how you keep track of all these fab movies.

I hope you had a great Mother’s Day!

AnNicole@OurSuburbanCottage’s last blog post..Happy Mother’s Day!

Terry Kearns May 10, 2009 at 10:01 pm

May I make a suggestion, not an easy movie for sure: “Blow Up.” It’s not just about style, but it’s all about style – mod London in the mid sixties. I haven’t been able to get “the look” of the movie out of my head since I first saw it about 1970. It’s also a look at live-work loft living 40 years ago.

Terry Kearns’s last blog post..Mary Mac’s – Barometer of Intown Health?

Remodeling Guy May 11, 2009 at 12:55 am

Hi Julia!

Kim and I loved this movie and now we need to see it again! You can’t beat an old stone-walled European village for a setting! Thanks for the post. Looks like a ton of work! Have a great week!

Tim

Remodeling Guy’s last blog post..Thirty Days To Your Inner Carpenter

Mom in High Heels May 11, 2009 at 2:23 am

Oh I love this movie! Love, love, love! It has nothing to do with the fact that I have been in “lurve” with Johnny Depp since I was about 16 (I swear). It’s a really well done movie and has lots of eye candy (pun totally intended). I’m going to have to find out where the real village is and make a trip there. If I do, I’ll send you photos. Every time I watch this movie I MUST eat chocolate. Have you ever had a chocolate sandwich? OMG, you MUST! You need a good crusty baguette (soft bread will NOT be the same) and a good chocolate bar. Hershey’s will work if you like milk chocolate (and I think it’s okay with Hershey’s), but I prefer a good quality dark chocolate bar. You don’t want a thick bar. Cut about a 4 inch piece of the baguette, then slice it open (like you would for a sandwich) and toast it lightly (LIGHTLY) under the broiler. Place the chocolate between the two pieces of bread while they’re still warm to melt it a little, and enjoy. I first had this in Paris and was blown away. Now it is a decadent snack to have while watching Johnny Depp….I mean Chocolat.

Mom in High Heels’s last blog post..Lightening my load. Or What on earth have I done?

Kim @ Everything Etsy May 11, 2009 at 7:47 am

I love the doors in the backyard party scene. I think I like any doors that’s are unusual. Maybe I should have a door blog…I love them all!

~Kim

Kim @ Everything Etsy’s last blog post..Supplier Spotlight – Down Shadow Lane {Fabric Giveaway!}

AnNicole@OurSuburbanCottage May 11, 2009 at 8:11 am

Yet another movie I need to own. I think I need to start making a list :). I don’t know how you keep track of all these fab movies.

I hope you had a great Mother’s Day!

AnNicole@OurSuburbanCottage’s last blog post..I Love Me Some Ticking Stripes

Suzy May 11, 2009 at 9:32 am

Wow you went all out today, lots of pics…..I’ll have to rent this one, I’ve never seen it.
Thanks for sharing, just how I imagine the country side to look like.

Suzy’s last blog post..News Flash….This just in!

Slowish Food May 11, 2009 at 9:33 am

I’d forgotten about this movie. I *love* it. Thanks for posting!

Slowish Food’s last blog post..Whoo-hoo! Guess Who’s One Year Old?

Leslie May 11, 2009 at 10:00 am

I’m always amazed at our (apparently) similar taste in movies! Beautiful job!

Leslie’s last blog post..Dearly loved…

Fifi Flowers May 11, 2009 at 12:22 pm

LOVED this movie… I posted about it and painted these… http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=24899937… I think I may have to watch it again this week while I am stuck off my feet… le sigh!
Can’t wait to find out who the winner is tomorrow! I will post about it too!
FUN!!!
Fifi

Fifi Flowers’s last blog post..A little Relapse… going to my Happy place…

Struggler May 11, 2009 at 12:56 pm

What beautiful pictures! And I can’t wait to try Mom in High Heels’ chocolate sandwich! Sounds a bit like pain au chocolat but with normal bread and therefore less greasy. Yum!
The follow-up book to Chocolat, The Girl With No Shadow, is set in Paris and would make a wonderful movie with some opportunities for lovely sets.

Struggler’s last blog post..Struggling with the $20 challenge

Angela May 11, 2009 at 1:57 pm

Love this movie! It’s one of the few that I own on dvd. It’s so neat how dark and dreary the town is, and how vibrant her chocolate shop is. Great pictures!!
~angela

Angela’s last blog post..Monday Memories: Grand Canyon

Aunt Amelia May 11, 2009 at 2:09 pm

Oh thank you so much. For this installment of ‘Movie Monday’ and for all of them. What a glorious gift to we house/set/etc. lovers.

How do you do this?!? Get these photos? Or screen captures or whatever? Amazing!

Gentle hugs,
‘Aunt Amelia’
Dear you,
.
Aunt Amelia’s Attic

Aunt Amelia’s last blog post..A Monday in May…

hookedonhouses May 11, 2009 at 2:13 pm

Aunt Amelia–

I watch the movie on my computer and snap photos of it as I go. Then I try to narrow them down to the best ones, which is always hard for me because I want to show everything. :-)

Glad you enjoy it! -Julia

Claudia@DipityRoad May 11, 2009 at 6:54 pm

I am thinking we must be kindred spirits. This movie is one i own and love watching… yum is all i can say. (over Johnny Depp) :)

When the mayor gets hysterical, I am always amazed at how people can be so intimidated, especially when they know in their hearts they are so, so very wrong.

Can wait for Mondays…always a favorite for sure!

Claudia@DipityRoad’s last blog post..Finding Inspiration

Kellye May 11, 2009 at 7:39 pm

I wasn’t quite as bowled over by this movie as were some. You know I’m a little different. ;)
I love the exteriors, though.

10th century France? WOW. As an American, it really amazes me how those buildings are still standing. Even in our large cities, we have a tendency to bulldoze everything and start from scratch.

from the right bank May 11, 2009 at 8:29 pm

What a great movie to show. I didn’t remember how great that backyard dinner scene was.

from the right bank’s last blog post..My Real Life Desk

Sher Miller May 13, 2009 at 7:40 am

This may be the very first time I realized that Johnny Depp actually had costars in this movie…

Sher Miller’s last blog post..HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

Dzintra Ingrid May 13, 2009 at 8:43 am

Thank You…Chocolat is one of my all time movie favourites. I especially loved Juliette shoes in this…and of course the gorgeous Johnny Depp?

Dzintra Ingrid’s last blog post..Mother’s Day 09…

Leeann May 14, 2009 at 12:08 pm

Fabulous post, Chocolat is one of my favourite movies – infact it was this movie that inspired me to come and live in France:-)

Leeann’s last blog post..Rain, rain go away

Catherine May 15, 2009 at 1:20 pm

Julia, I have a suggestion for Movie Mondays. it is the house of “Death at a Funeral” an English movie of the director Frank Oz, that house is incredible.
Have you see it?
Thank you

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com July 10, 2010 at 4:19 pm

I <3 this movie and this house :)

Johnny Depp was NEVER hotter.
.-= Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com´s last blog ..Contest- Superhero Needed =-.

Emmeline July 26, 2011 at 3:30 am

I’m new to your blog, and blogs in general really, but I love yours! The houses you show here are absolutely gorgeous and you do such a good job researching the little known facts, too. The practical magic house, along with this entire page, have quickly become my favorites. You now have a new fan!

-Em.

Gwynneth September 18, 2011 at 2:59 pm

I had to laugh at the comment above about “I Love You, Man”–it IS a funny, running gag about Paul Rudd going on about “Chocolat” to his new pal, a total “guy’s guy”, Jason Segel, who thinks it’s pathetic that Rudd’s character, Peter, would say that his fondest memory is “eating summer salad with [his girlfriend] and watching Chocolat with Johnny Depp”. If you haven’t seen this “bromance”, I highly recommend it, as well as the extended discussion about “Chocolat” in the DVD extras!

hookedonhouses September 18, 2011 at 10:33 pm

I remember those scenes–hilarious!

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