Ah, the life of an artist…or should we say artiste. Indulge your fantasies about the artistic life with our selection of French-language movies currently streaming online about artists and the people that love them. But don’t be surprised if some of the lives depicted turn out a bit less romantic (and much darker) than the fantasy. Once you’ve watched, don’t forget to sign up for our next round of French classes, starting at the end of April.

 

Cézanne et Moi

Danièle Thompson (2016, France), Netflix

This historical drama tells the true story of the lifelong friendship between two legends: Paul Cézanne and Emile Zola. From a childhood friendship, their relationship grows more complex as they both enter the fraught world of the Parisian intelligentsia in the 1880s. As they grow together, the petty rivalry and competition that define their milieu threaten to tear them apart.

 

The Color of Lies (Au coeur du mensonge)

Claude Chabrol (1999, France), Amazon

In an isolated village in Bretagne, a 10-year-old girl is murdered. Suspicion immediately falls on the last person to have seen her alive, the artist and painting teacher René. As his creative and personal life fall apart under the town’s suspicion, he begins an affair and searches for the real killer.

 

The Artist and the Model (El artista y la modelo)

Fernando Trueba (2012, France & Spain), Amazon

Marc is an aging sculptor living in quiet seclusion with his wife near the Spanish border. Although France has been occupied by the Nazis, their simple life continues unchanged until a young Spanish refugee arrives at their door. Mercè becomes a model, muse, and much more, changing the life of the couple forever.