Other films by Sylvain Chomet:
* WesternAnimation/TheOldLadyAndThePigeons
* WesternAnimation/TheIllusionist]

''Les Triplettes de Belleville'', a.k.a. ''The Triplets of Belleville'' or ''Belleville Rendez-vous'', is a 2003 French animated film by animator and writer Creator/SylvainChomet. For all its quirky twists and turns, it ultimately becomes an introspective character study rather than simply a piece of popular entertainment. It's also tied together by some truly fantastic jazz and period-inspired music by Benoît Charest and features almost no dialogue.

Madame Souza lives with her recently orphaned grandson Champion, who appears understandably depressed. In an effort to cheer him up, she buys him a [[CanineCompanion dog, Bruno]], and (after discovering his love of cycling) a tricycle.

[[TimePassesMontage Twenty years later]], Champion [[TrainingFromHell has become a ferocious cyclist under his grandmother's stern training regimen]]. Bruno has gotten enormously fat (except for his legs) and lives to eat and bark at the trains that pass perilously close to their ramshackle house.

Champion enters the TourDeFrance, but is kidnapped partway through by mysterious [[TheMafia mob thugs]]. Madame Souza, with Bruno's help, follows them by truck, on foot, and by boat, winding up in the fanciful [[TheCity city of Belleville]].

Here, she encounters the eponymous [[CoolOldLady triplets]], aged former Vaudeville stars now living out their days fishing for frogs with hand grenades and playing trios on the [[EverythingIsAnInstrument newspaper, refrigerator, and vacuum cleaner]].

Together, the motley crew must use their quick wits and bizarre skills to outfox the mob and rescue Champion.

!!''The Triplets of Belleville'' provides examples of the following tropes:

* AbnormalLimbRotationRange: The maître d's back. To the point that his head is often ''upside down''.
* AdjustingYourGlasses: Very often with Madame Souza.
* AmbiguouslyGay: The guy that rents the paddleboats. If you see the inside of his shack, there are photos of shirtless and/or half-naked men all over the walls.
* AnimalMotifs: A few of the characters, like the bikers, mechanic, and the Triplets of Belleville, have striking similarities to particular animals.
** The bikers become overworked horses, snorting and whinnying. When one gets too tired, he gets put down exactly like a lame race horse.
** The mechanic most of all. He's short, fat, has large ears, normally appears in a kneeling position when operating the bicycle simulator from the inside (like in a hole) and emits something resembling a squeak every few seconds. And he's got a [[IncrediblyLamePun moustache]].
* ArtShift: After the opening 1930s-style TV broadcast.
* AwardBaitSong: "Belleville Rendez-vous"
* BabyCarriage: A car full of {{Mooks}} hits a baby carriage. The baby carriage is fine; the car is totaled. Well, [[RuleOfCool why not?]]
* {{Badass Grand|pa}}ma: Madame Souza is a tiny, club-footed old woman who is persistent enough to follow an ocean liner across the entire Atlantic in a ''foot-pedalled boat'', at night, during a huge storm at sea, to the accompaniment of Mozart's "Mass in C Minor - Kyrie". She kicks over a car too. The eponymous Triplets are no slouches either; for elderly vaudeville performers, they have surprising proficiency with explosives.
* BigFriendlyDog: Bruno
* BlandNameProduct: One of the products sponsoring the Tour de France among others is called "La Valkyrie Fromage", which the winner takes a photo with its [[BrawnHilda mascots/models]]. And its logo is very reminiscent of the Laughing Cow Cheese (called "La Vache Qui Rit" in France), as it is the picture of a red-skinned Valkyrie, smiling.
* BookEnds: The only spoken dialogue that Madame Souza has in the movie.
* BrickJoke: After discovering Champion's kidnapping, Madame Souza [[spoiler:rents a pedal boat for twenty minutes. We don't see the owner again until [[TheStinger the end credits]], when he's still standing there, looking out at the beach and checking his watch. (This may be a ShoutOut to ''Film/{{Airplane}}'']].)
* BringIt: When Madame Souza sees the mafia boss still chasing them, who had just undergone an UnderTheTruck InstantConvertible, she steps off the bike simulator and [[GoThroughMe stands in front of them]]. [[spoiler: She simply used her clubbed heel to kick them off the bridge]].
* ButtSticker: Two of the women in the opening scene each has her husband stuck on her butt and he is revealed to be flattened and the other one has her husband stuck between her butt cheeks, the latter of which may be ''dead'' from asphyxiation.
* ChaseScene: The film's climax -- a classic car chase, complete with [[LemmingCops pursuers gradually being killed off]], [[EveryCarIsAPinto cars exploding at the slightest provocation]], an UnderTheTruck InstantConvertible, an [[FruitCart imperiled baby carriage]], the RailroadTracksOfDoom ''and'' a TrainEscape... truly {{Troperiffic}}. The fact that several of these are played with and subverted (and the fact it's ended by a tiny old lady ''kicking over a speeding car'') saves it from ClicheStorm. It's also [[LowSpeedChase incredibly slow]] -- the heroes' escape vehicle is the bike simulator that moves at a visibly slow clip. The cars that give chase ''do'' catch up, but because the bike simulator is very broad, it is impossible to overtake it by car. The only thing the Mafia goons could do was to drive behind it and shoot at the drivers, which is what they did.
* ChekhovsGun: [[spoiler:Madame Souza's shoe's extended heel]]. Actually, just about every element introduced in the movie is one. Including, of course, the eponymous triplets.
** The Triplets are incredibly protective of their vacuum cleaner, icebox, and newspaper. Exactly why eventually becomes clear.
* ColourCodedForYourConvenience: Madame Souza and her grandson Champion are Portuguese; as such, they are mostly wearing their flag's red and green.
* ConspicuousCG: Though the movie embodies the classic cell animation style, there are moments where one notices... well, conspicuous CG.
* ContrivedCoincidence: Madame Souza just happens to run into the Triplets, who just happen to work in the club where Champion is held hostage.
* CoolOldLady: Both Madame Souza and the Triplets.
* CrapsackWorld: Madame Souza's countryside home quickly gets swallowed up by an expanding, dreary Paris, and Belleville has either disgusting amounts of opulence or poverty -- everyone is either obese or just skin and bones. And the less said about the food, the better.
* {{Determinator}}: Repeat: Madame Souza paddled all the way over to a whole different continent through a storm to rescue her grandson.
* DistressedDude: Champion, who gets kidnapped by the Mafia and has to be rescued by his grandmother.
* DreadfulMusician: Subverted. Madame Souza has a very good ear in music, and can make do with a bicycle wheel's spokes as a tuned percussive instrument with just a bit of adjusting, yet when you hear her play the piano...
* DreamSequence: From a dog, no less.
* {{Eagleland}}: Belleville is a satire of both America and Canada, but it's hard to miss the obese Statue of Liberty clutching a hamburger and the equally plump citizens. A tad hilarious; consider who ''gave'' Americans the Statue of Liberty, and the fact the French keep a smaller twin of her in Paris.
* EmpathyPet: To an extent, Bruno.
* EverythingIsAnInstrument: The Triplets use common household items as the "instruments" in their act.
* EyesAlwaysShut: The mafia Dons and the triplets.
* TheFamilyForTheWholeFamily: [[ZigZaggingTrope Zigzags]] throughout the movie. The Mafia are [[LemmingCops pretty]] [[ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy incompetent]] but are genuinely menacing at times, such as when the bookie [[spoiler:shoots the cyclist]].
* FantasticFragility: The French mobster's cars and towering cronies; it doesn't take much to knock them out. The cars can't even make turns without toppling over.
* FastFoodNation: The titular city is a caricature of UsefulNotes/NewYork, where the citizens are almost exclusively grossly overweight people eating hamburgers and other junk food.
* FlashForward: An elderly Champion at the end.
* FlippingTheBird: A random Belleville citizen does this after Bruno tried to eat his food.
* FreezeFrameBonus: No matter how many times you've watched this movie, there are things you might've missed because of the crazy details.
** Special mention must be the newspaper Madame Souza read about the conspiracy about the French Mafia kidnapping cyclists from the Tour de France, using them for their own benefit. There's even a picture of someone's skull with a hole on its head, apparently dug up from wherever it was buried. [[spoiler:And when you consider the fate of that one cyclist that fell off of his bike, it's assumed that they've been doing this for a long time and have been getting away with it]]!
** The waitress that serves hamburgers has a circular pin on her chest, and something what seems to be her name (could be her name tag?) written on it: Fanny Roberts.
* GainaxEnding: Although, this trope might be averted, being the whole film, up until that point, could possibly be seen as and is more likely a flashback.
-->'''Madame Souza:''' [[CallBack Is that it, then? Is it over, do you think? What have you got to say to Grandma?]]\\
'''Champion:''' (''now an old man'') I think that's probably it. It's over, Grandma.
* GiantMook: The Mafia bodyguards are reminiscent of refrigerators.
* GratuitousEnglish: "No money, no hamburgers!"
* GratuitousItalian: The song heard in the barbershop, which is [[BilingualBonus fucking hilarious if you actually know Italian]].
* [[GratuitousForeignLanguage Gratuitous Portuguese]]: Madame Souza's terrible song at the piano in the Triplets' house.
* HandicappedBadass: The guitar player on the intro scat number is missing three of his left hand's fingers; this does not hinder him from playing harmoniously. When you think that it doesn't get better, he starts playing a solo with his left foot's toes replacing his hand, which is free now to remove the cigarette from his mouth. (NOTE: The guitar player is a direct caricature of the great French guitarist Django Reinhardt, who really did have two fingers missing from his left hand. Didn't impair his brilliant performance a bit.)
* ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy: The French one-hundred-plus mobsters are prompted to aim and shoot at the Triplets and Madame Souza; between them and later the car mooks, they don't land a single hit.
* LeFilmArtistique: ''Oh'', yeah.
* {{Leitmotif}}: The Bach song played on television that inspires Madame Souza to cheer up a despondent Champion by teaching him to play the piano accompanies his misfortune again when the French Mafia starts kidnapping cyclists, and later, Madame Souza switches from playing Belleville Rendez-vous for the Triplets to the same song, likely implying that she explains her situation and troubles to them offscreen.
* MadeOfIron: Bruno doubles for a car wheel and can still gallop with Souza on his back.
* MailmanVsDog: Bruno barks at the train each time it passes - he even knows when it's about to come. Then comes an InvertedTrope when Bruno dreams he is on the train and the passengers are barking at him. Then in Belleville the trope is taken to its LogicalExtreme and a subway train passes every minute!
* MeaningfulName: Champion.
* MimeAndMusicOnlyCartoon: Except for the songs and a few snatches of dialogue, most notably [[spoiler:the recurring line that [[BookEnds bookends]] the film]].
* MiniatureSeniorCitizens: Madame Souza for the most part while the Triplets seem to be of the same height as they were decades ago.
* MisterBig: All mafia bosses in Belleville are tiny people accompanied by GiantMook bodyguards.
* NationalStereotypes:
** The film pokes fun at various aspects of the French, such as frog eating (the Triplets dine on tadpole-seasoned frogs), their obsession with the Tour de France (or the Circuit de France as it's called in-world) and the French's infamous poor-quality [[TheAllegedCar cars]]. Wine is also very prominent with all French characters.
** It also shows that the entire population of America is morbidly obese.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed:
** The opening sequence, "Belleville Rendez-vous", is [[ShowWithinAShow a film]] from TheRoaringTwenties, and features caricatures of classic stars such as Music/DjangoReinhardt and a topless Creator/JosephineBaker. The tap dancer who is eaten by his shoes is Creator/FredAstaire. The joyful conductor is a caricature of French singer Music/CharlesTrenet.
** When the film breaks, RTF switches over to a tape of a performance of Bach on solo piano. The pianist is immediately identifiable as Glenn Gould.
** UsefulNotes/CharlesDeGaulle, seen on the television set later in the film.
** The accordion player getting gnats stuck in her teeth at the Tour de France is a caricature of [[http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yvette_Horner Yvette Horner]] (and according to an interview with Yvette, that scene from the movie was pretty much TruthInTelevision).
* NonIndicativeName: "Belleville" isn't actually such a beautiful city.
* NonhumansLackAttributes: Averted, Bruno has very visible testicles.
* NoodlePeople: The maître d'.
* PaperThinDisguise: Souza's disguising herself as the mechanic, with oven mitts for ears.
** Except, the mechanic is clearly shown wearing those oven mitts to protect his ears, the paper thin disguise would really be the false mustache and buck teeth the triplets paste onto Madame Souza's upper lip.
* ParentalAbandonment: The first act of the film is Madame Souza trying to cheer up her grandson whose parents have recently died prior to the real story.
* PedestrianCrushesCar: One of the gangster cars flips after hitting a BabyCarriage; either the baby was just big enough (and he ''is'' big), or the mob's cars are just that flimsy.
* PoliceAreUseless: Police? What police? If it weren't for that one short newspaper article released by the police of Belleville, one might believe that police does not exist in that city, or even that universe.
* PositiveDiscrimination: The female protagonists are resourceful, creative and generous. All male characters are either villains or weak and passive people -- or turn into horny monkeys.
* PretentiousLatinMotto: All the French Mafia's license plates say ''In vino veritas'' "In wine, truth."
* RunningGag: Bruno's hatred of trains, after Champion's model train ran over his tail.
* ScreamsLikeALittleGirl: When separated from their bodyguards, the Mafia dons have actual baby cries dubbed in.
* SecondaryCharacterTitle: The Triplets are not the main protagonists of the film - they eventually feature largely, but Souza and Bruno are the main characters the story follows.
* ShoutOut: The old ladies watch ''Film/JourDeFete'' by Creator/JacquesTati on TV. Director Sylvain Chomet would later direct WesternAnimation/TheIllusionist, based on an unfinished script by Tati.
* ShowWithinAShow: The opening short, "Belleville Rendez-vous," is an old-fashioned black-and-white scat song number [[spoiler:and, at the end, apparently the entire movie was a movie being watched by a much older Champion]].
* TakeThat: The scene which shows the run-down house where the Triplettes have to live also shows for a few seconds a toilet clearly not flushed [[spoiler:- the feces form the famous Mickey Mouse head.]]
* TheAllegedCar: The French version: the mobsters drive stretch versions of Citroën 2CVs, which are ridiculously underpowered cars to which a WV Beetle compares favourably. Fittingly enough, they're shown to be as underpowered and easily disabled as a stretch version of an actual 2CV would be, although they probably wouldn't be destroyed by a collision into a baby cart or be able to be flipped over by a MiniatureSeniorCitizen with a club foot.
* TheOnlyOne: Souza (and Bruno) set off to save Champion herself. No mention is made if PoliceAreUseless - they aren't even brought up.
* TheStinger: That guy that rents paddleboats.
* ThereIsOnlyOneBed: The Triplets all sleep in one bed.
* TimeSkip: From Champion getting the bike to training for the tour. Then one in the middle of the movie as blink-and-you'll-miss-it winter passes in Belleville. [[spoiler: Then from plot resolution to the end.]]
* TinyGuyHugeGirl: In the opening sequence, the audience consists ''entirely'' of tiny men and their enormous wives.
* TrainingFromHell: Souza is a quite tough trainer when giving Champion biking lessons.
* UnconventionalVehicleChase: The climax features Madame Souza, Champion, the Triplets, and Bruno trying to flee from an armada of cars... with only a bicycle simulator as their escape vehicle.
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse:
** What happened to that mechanic? He was knocked unconscious and stuffed into a chest. He was never seen again.
** Also the driver from the Tour de France disappears after arriving at the docks.
* {{White Dwarf Starlet}}s: The Triplets, but in a subversion, they don't care - in fact, they're just as happy as when they were rich and famous.
* WunzaPlot: One is an old Portuguese-French woman with a obese dog searching for her grandson. The other are a group of old former vaudeville artists. Together, they will destroy the French mafia.