Printemps du Cinema/Seeing Spring

Here’s another perk of living in Paris (or in this case, anywhere in France). Every March for three days, all cinema tickets across the country are only 3.50 euros. For any film, at any time, new release or not. This annual event is called “Le Printemps du Cinema.” Me likey.

Yesterday I went to see “The King’s Speech.” Yes, I’m one of the last people on earth to see this film, but I think I was rewarded for my waiting strategy.

You can imagine that with the 3.50 price tag, going to the movies suddenly strikes a lot of people as a good idea. There can often be long lines during these three days. Pick a flick that’s been out forever, though (and even better, go at an off-hour if you can), you’re more likely to beat the crowds.

And so I did. I slid right in, saw a great movie, and waltzed right back out, all for less than the price of a good hot chocolate (a key cost comparison).

On a random note, as I was leaving the theater, I was nearly knocked over the head with this reality: whoa! Paris is beautiful!

Avenue Carnot - Étoile

Oh, wait. That’s not original, is it? Let me clarify. I’m near-sighted and spend almost all day in front of a computer for which I don’t need my glasses. And I practically never wear my glasses out. Eh, I can see what’s in front of me, who needs to see far away, right?

I wear them when I go to the movies, though, and I kept them on as I was exiting the theater. And then I realized just how bad my eyesight must be, because the city seemed to be blazing with beauty – on fire with it, now that I could see clearly. I felt like I was in a film.

So, I guess I better admit that I’m getting older, eyesight’s growing poorer, and just wear my glasses more often. In return, the City of Light will delight me anew. Priceless.

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23 Responses to “Printemps du Cinema/Seeing Spring”


  1. 1 Lindsey March 23, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Sometimes that’s just the realization you need to be happy in Paris :) Spring usually does the trick! Loved “A King’s Speech” though it took a couple tries to get in, it was always sold out!

  2. 3 Coralie (Hotel Hotel) March 23, 2011 at 11:26 am

    I understand why there were so many people during “Le Printemps du Cinéma”: I’m living in Aix-en-Provence and cinema tickets are 9.80 €! And yet Aix is a town for students ! I took the opportunity to see True Grit sunday, this movie is very interesting.

  3. 5 Stephanie March 23, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    Paris is beautiful and I especially love that photo you have of the Champs Élysée. It’s stunning really and I would love it hanging extra large in my house :)

    On a second note, is it your glasses or your new 10 year card that is making Paris more beautiful? I can only imagine how you must be feeling – I hope one day I get make that same announcement with joyous excitement.

    Cant wait to hear more about your love for Paris! And félicitations

    • 6 paris (im)perfect March 23, 2011 at 2:47 pm

      Yeah, I almost wrote that myself. I’m *sure* there is a connection between getting my 10-year card and seeing Paris as more beautiful :)

      That being said, the glasses really *did* help everything become more stunningly clear. Don’t know why I avoid wearing them so much.

      And lastly, I’m sure I will some day get to read and comment on your own joyous announcement. You are determined, so you will get there!

  4. 7 Barbara Hall March 23, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    I think I hear Ella Fitzgerald sing “I love Paris in the Springtime” somewhere in the background…… In the recent years, I’ve been to Paris in April a couple of times and it’s been perfect then.

    Enjoy le printemps, with your 10 year card and your eyeglasses!

    From you fellow eyeglass-wearer in Sonoma.

    • 8 paris (im)perfect March 23, 2011 at 7:12 pm

      Thanks! Yeah, “April in Paris” – that song is almost always in my head once spring hits. Despite the name of my blog, April in Paris kind of is perfect.

      I hear California ain’t so bad, either! :)

  5. 9 e March 23, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    A city ablaze with Spring. How lovely!

  6. 11 Danielle March 23, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    C’est tres belle!
    I will be visiting friends in Paris (well, actually Versailles but Paris is spitting distance) for the whole month this June and I’m extremely excited. I have seen Paris in July and December (both last year) and it was too hot in July (the two days I spent there) and too freaking cold in December (snow, gray days and more snow). I am hoping June will be perfect.
    I hope you enjoyed your film (don’t feel old; I have been wearing glasses/contacts since I was 13) and still haven’t seen any of the films raved about during the awards season. I wish they had 3.50 days here (or $5 days would even be good if I take the exchange rate in consideration). What a marvelous idea and a great way to move some money around in today’s troubled economy! :-)

    • 12 paris (im)perfect March 25, 2011 at 7:15 pm

      I hope you’ll have a great time in June! It will be a great time to visit. Also, I don’t actually feel old because of my glasses. Just have to admit that my eyesight is getting worse, though :)

      And yes, I do love the 3.50 euro movie. Wish they did it more often!

  7. 13 pariskarin March 24, 2011 at 11:42 am

    Terrific photo, Sion. Isn’t it incredible what spring in Paris looks like? I have been very inspired by the burgeoning trees and flowers in the city as well.

    So glad you got out and about to check out “The King’s Speech.” :)

  8. 15 Sweet Freak March 24, 2011 at 8:40 pm

    Ha – I have that experience all the time! Suddenly seeing the world with 20/20 can be miraculously beautiful. Though, sometimes troubling, too. Like when I wear my glasses in my apartment and realize that if I can see so well into my neighbors’ apartments, they must always be getting an eyeful from me!

    • 16 paris (im)perfect March 25, 2011 at 1:10 am

      OMG, I do the exact same thing! I always feel like I’m in my own little bubble in my apartment because I can’t really see anything out there. And then I put on my glasses and go, whoa! I can totally see my neighbors! Oops!

  9. 17 Buffy March 25, 2011 at 3:06 am

    Thank you for the picture!!! I love Spring, and I bet Spring in Paris is extra special. The King’s speech was a great movie. I am glad Colin Firth won an Oscar for it. Enjoy Spring, and keep enjoying Paris!

    Buffy

    • 18 paris (im)perfect March 25, 2011 at 7:16 pm

      Can’t actually take credit for this photo. From Flickr Creative Commons! And yes, spring in Paris is extra special and the King’s Speech was great! Happy spring where you are too, Buffy!

  10. 19 Oneika March 27, 2011 at 3:15 am

    Off topic, but I LOVED the King’s Speech. Had no idea that George VI had a stammer, and spent an hour after seeing the film searching for authentic clips of him speaking… Colin Firth nailed Bertie’s voice PERFECTLY! It’s actually bizarre how spot on Firth was! The Oscar was well deserved!

  11. 21 Jeff March 27, 2011 at 4:00 am

    I love going to the movies in Paris. Now that I am over 65 I get a discount! Not much but it does buy a nice glass of wine after the movie.


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paris (im)perfect?

Sion Dayson is paris (im)perfect. Writer, dreamer, I moved to France on – no exaggerating – a romantic whim. As you can imagine, a lot can go wrong (and very right!) with such a (non)plan. These are the (im)perfect stories that result.

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