Film: French Kiss

"Why weren't you the one, Charlie? The one who turned on the big shiny Kate-light that shines so bright?"

A 1995 film directed by Lawrence Kasdan. Kate (Meg Ryan) and Charlie (Timothy Hutton) have a perfect life planned out before them: buying a house, marriage, kids, the whole works. Kate's fear of flying keeps her in Canada while Charlie goes to Paris for a medical convention. While there Charlie is smitten by the lovely Juliette (Suzan Anbeh). He calls off the wedding with Kate and she nervously boards a plane to get him back. She ends up sitting next to the petty French thief Luc Teyssier (Kevin Kline). He hides a stolen necklace and smuggled grape vine in her bag to get it through customs. Her bag is stolen, the necklace apparently lost, and Kate and Luc head to Cannes — Luc to find the necklace and Kate to get Charlie back. Along the way, Kate and Luc begin having feelings for each other — which change the course of their lives.


Contains examples of:

  • Beautiful All Along: "Now who is the goddess?"
  • Book Ends: The film begins and (basically) ends with Kate sitting in an airplane seat visualizing a pastoral scene to calm her fear of flying.
  • Brutal Honesty: Luc isn't terribly impressed with Kate insisting she and Charlie were inseparable.
    Kate: We had plans, OK? We had plans for a home and a family. I would remind him of that.
  • Canada, Eh?: Kate is trying to become a Canadian citizen to move in with Charlie. The Canadian Embassy rep is a stereotypical Canadian.
  • Cool Old Guy: Jean-Paul, played by Jean Reno.
  • Culture Clash: North America versus France.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Luc's description of the joys of riding a plane are transparently similar to those of sex.
    • Especially when he explicitly states it's just like sex.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect: Averted until halfway through the movie: Kate repeatedly fails to get a view of the tower while in Paris, missing it by mere seconds at one point, until she finally glimpses it from the train as she leaves the city.
  • Hidden Depths: Juliette. Her scene with Luc reveals that she has emotions and fears. Her argument with Charlie before their makeup kiss hint that she and Charlie really are meant for each other.
  • I Owe You My Life: Jean-Paul says he owes Luc a debt greater than money because he saved his life.
  • Lady in Red: The first shot of Juliette, and she is a goddess in it.
  • The Loins Sleep Tonight: Luc's embarrassing secret.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Luc believes this.
    (Charlie and Juliette make up and kiss)
    Jean-Paul: Ah, l'amour. C'est merveilleux. (Ah, love. It's wonderful.)
    Luc: (dismissive) C'est ne pas l'amour. (That's not love.)
  • Shout-Out: Inevitable that at one point Kate will say, "Sorry, Charlie."
  • This Is Gonna Suck: "Lactose intolerance!"
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Jean-Paul and Luc.
  • Will They or Won't They?
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Jean-Paul repeatedly states his belief that Luc is much better than a petty thief.