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A Monster in Paris
Monster in paris theatrical.jpg
French release poster
Directed by Bibo Bergeron
Produced by Luc Besson
Screenplay by Bibo Bergeron
Stéphane Kazandjian
Story by Bibo Bergeron
Starring Matthieu Chedid
Vanessa Paradis
Music by Matthieu Chedid
Editing by Pascal Chevé
Nicolas Stretta
Studio EuropaCorp
Bibo Films
France 3 Cinéma
Walking the Dog
uFilm
uFund
Canal+
France Télévisions
CinéCinéma
Le Tax Shelter du Gouvernement Fédéral de Belgique
Umedia
Distributed by EuropaCorp Distribution
Release date(s) 12 October 2011 (2011-10-12)
Running time 90 minutes
Country France
Language English
French
Budget $32 million
Money made $26.6 million

A Monster in Paris (French: Un monstre à Paris) is a 2011 French 3D computer-animated musical comedy science fantasy adventure film directed by Bibo Bergeron, and based on a story he wrote. It was produced by Luc Besson, written by Bergeron and Stéphane Kazandjian, and distributed by EuropaCorp Distribution, and features the voices of Sean Lennon, Vanessa Paradis, Adam Goldberg, Danny Huston, Madeline Zima, Matthew Géczy, Jay Harrington, Catherine O'Hara, and Bob Balaban. Many aspects of the film are a direct copy from the Gaston Leroux's novel The Phantom of the Opera. It was released on 12 October 2011. It was also produced by Bibo Films, France 3 Cinéma, Walking The Dog, uFilm, uFund, Canal+, France Télévisions, CinéCinéma, Le Tax Shelter du Gouvernement Fédéral de Belgique and Umedia. Its music was composed by Matthieu Chedid, Sean Lennon and Patrice Renson. It was edited by Pascal Chevé and Nicolas Stretta.

Plot

The film is set in 1910; the story beginning by documenting the flooding of the River Seine that year.

A shy projectionist Emile Petit has a passion for film and is in love with his co-worker at the cinema, Maud. His friend, an exuberant yet obnoxious inventor and delivery driver, Raoul, picks him up from work to transport him in his bizarre vehicle (called "Catherine"), to obtain a new belt for his projector. In purchasing a new belt, Emile also buys himself a new camera, which would’ve been stolen by a local thief had “Catherine” not malfunctioned. The story also introduces Lucille, a cabaret singer at the club L'Oiseau Rare ("The Rare Bird") and Raoul's childhood friend with whom he is on bad terms. Her aunt Carlotta is trying to marry her off to the wealthy Police Commissioner and Mayor candidate, Victor Maynott. One evening, Raoul brings Emile to make a delivery to the Botanical Gardens. In the absence of the Professor who works there, the place is guarded by his assistant, a proboscis monkey named Charles. Here, Raoul experiments with an "Atomize-a-Tune" mixture which temporarily gives Charles the voice of an opera singer and an unstable "super fertilizer" which instantly grows a sunflower seed into a giant sunflower, which topples towards Raoul and Emile. In the ensuing disorder, an explosion occurs when the two chemicals are mixed. Everyone is unscathed, but Emile is convinced he has glimpsed a monstrous creature, a photo of which later appears in the newspapers.

An investigation is launched into the whereabouts of the creature by Maynott's second in command, Pâté, but is fronted by Maynott, in the hope of popular support for his mayoral candidacy. At the same time he tries unsuccessfully to charm Lucille. Meanwhile, Lucille is trying to find a new musician for her show, and turns down the cabaret's waiter, Albert. Trying to vacate the cabaret, Albert stumbles across the creature and flees, terrified. Upon seeing the creature, Lucille is frightened, but hears it sing and discovers it is not dangerous but has a lovely singing voice. She therefore welcomes it, under the name of Francoeur (meaning "honest heart"). It is then revealed that the creature is a flea that the fertilizer, amidst all the other chemicals in the laboratory explosion (including the Atomize-a-Tune, resulting in Francouer’s beautiful voice), enlarged to human scale. During the investigation, Emile and Raoul's role in the laboratory incident is discovered. For Maynott's interest in the creature, they receive the Medal of Honor. On a challenge set earlier by Lucille, Raoul uses this to get the best seats at Lucille's show at "The Rare Bird", where Francoeur (disguised) and Lucille sing as a duet. However, unknown to Lucille, the effects of the potion aren’t permanent and Francoeur is slowly shrinking down to his normal size. After the show, Emile and Raoul congratulate Lucille on her show, but Lucille accidentally reveals the identity of Francoeur, which Albert (who overheard her confession) reports to the police. Emile, Raoul, and Francoeur narrowly escape and Albert is arrested on suspicion of lying to the police. The trio have trouble trying to figure out where to put Francoeur, as he is too frightful looking to be seen on the streets and Maynott is still after him. Suddenly, Lucille comes up with an idea she plans to present during the ceremony, in which the trio will reveal Francoeur and feign his death.

The next day, Maynott opens the Montmartre Funicular, which serves Montmartre and the Basilica of the Sacré Cœur. Francouer is seemingly ‘killed’ after Maynott throws his ‘antidote’ at the creature and stomps it once it shrinks back down, but he quickly discovers Francouer hiding under the stage. Francouer and his friends are chased through the streets of Paris by Maynott. The chase concludes at the tip of the Eiffel Tower. Raoul uses “Catherine’s” flap to swim there, but just as they make it to the Tower, “Catherine” sinks. Meanwhile, Maud (after receiving a date invite by Emile) arrives at the tower just in time for the ensuing battle, in which she supports Emile and admits her feelings for him. After a battle to protect Francoeur from Maynott, a gunshot from Maynott and Francoeur's sudden disappearance leads everyone to believe he is dead. Maynott is then arrested by Pâté, who feels remorseful for aiding Maynott in his rampage, for the premeditated murder of Francouer, on the basis that Francoeur is innocent. Later that evening Lucille is distraught by the disappearance of Francoeur; but Raoul convinces her to sing anyway. Whilst struggling to begin, she hears Francoeur, restored to his natural size, sing in her ear, much to her happiness. Some time later, the absent Professor returns from his trip; and when the three friends explain the situation, he permanently returns Francoeur to human size. Francoeur receives second billing on the posters advertising Lucille's show. Lucille and Raoul later share their first kiss in Lucille's dressing room. In a flashback, it is revealed that Raoul misunderstood Lucille's intentions when she took his favorite toy truck as a child — she had hoped that he would pursue her.

In a mid-credits scene, Raoul, Lucille, Francoeur, Maud, Emile, Charles, Carlotta, and Pâté scatter super-fertilized sunflower seeds to drain the flooded Seine of its water. In a post-credits scene, Maynott is shown in the same cell as Albert and the thief from earlier, forced to endure the duo's appalling singing.

Cast

Character French English
Francœur Matthieu Chedid (as -M-) Sean Lennon
Lucille
Vanessa Paradis
Raoul Gad Elmaleh Adam Goldberg
Victor Maynott François Cluzet Danny Huston
Maud Ludivine Sagnier Madeline Zima
Madame Carlotta Julie Ferrier Catherine O'Hara
Albert Bruno Salomone Matthew Géczy
Emile Sébastien Desjours Jay Harrington
Inspector Pâté Philippe Peythieu Bob Balaban

Awards

Annie Awards 2014

  • Annie Award - Outstanding Achievement in Character Design in an Animated Feature Production - Christophe Lourdelet - Nominated

César Awards, France 2012

  • César Award - Best Animated Film (Meilleur film d'animation) - Bibo Bergeron (director), Luc Besson (producer) - Nominated
  • César Award - Best Original Music (Meilleure musique originale) - Matthieu Chedid, Patrice Renson - Nominated

Soundtrack

The soundtrack includes both songs and short clips from the film, in both French and English. The soundtrack of the English version was released in the UK a few days after the film's release on both CD and digital download. The album is credited to Vanessa Paradis & (-M-)

French version

  1. "Les actualités (Interlude)" (0:27)
  2. "La valse de Paris" (0:43)
  3. "La Seine - Cabaret" (Vanessa Paradis -) (1:17)
  4. "Emile et Raoul" (2:00)
  5. "Sur les toits" (1:28)
  6. "Maynott" (1:05)
  7. "La rencontre" (1:45)
  8. "Un monstre à Paris" (-M-) (2:18)
  9. "Le baptëme" (Interlude) (Lucille) (0:11)
  10. "Francœur"/Lucille (2:13)
  11. "Brume à Paname" (1:01)
  12. "Cabaret" (1:02)
  13. "La Seine" (Vanessa Paradis & -M-) (2:48)
  14. "Perquisition" (0:59)
  15. "Sacré cœur" (0:56)
  16. "Papa Paname" (Vanessa Paradis) (2:23)
  17. "Sue le fleuve"/"Tournesol" (1:15)
  18. "Tour Eiffel infernale" (2:29)
  19. "L'amour dans l'âme" (-M-) (1:30)
  20. "Flashback" (1:39)
  21. "U p'tit baiser" (Vanessa Paradis & -M-) (2:24)
  22. "Funky baiser" (5:13)

English version

  1. "Interlude - the News" (0:27)
  2. "La Valse de Paris" (0:43)
  3. "La Seine and I Cabaret" (Vanessa Paradis -) (1:17)
  4. "Emile et Raoul" (2:00)
  5. "Sur les Toits" (1:28)
  6. "Maynott" (1:05)
  7. "La Rencontre" (1:45)
  8. "A Monster in Paris" (Sean Lennon) (2:18)
  9. "Interlude - Lucille 'The Baptism' (0:11)
  10. "Francœur - Lucille" (2:13)
  11. "Brume à Paname" (1:01)
  12. "Cabaret" (1:02)
  13. "La Seine and I" (Vanessa Paradis & Sean Lennon) (2:48)
  14. "Perquisition" (0:59)
  15. "Sacré Cœur" (0:56)
  16. "Papa Paris" (Vanessa Paradis) (2:23)
  17. "Sue le Fleuve - Tournesol" (1:15)
  18. "Tour Eiffel Infernale" (2:29)
  19. "Love is in My Soul" (Sean Lennon) (1:30)
  20. "Flashback" (1:39)
  21. "Just a Little Kiss" (Vanessa Paradis & Sean Lennon) (2:24)
  22. "Funky Baiser" (5:13)
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