Arts, Culture & Media

French box office hit

There are plenty of stereotypes about this region in the north of France and it appears one of them is true: the grim weather. The landscape is one of the most pretty of France, but it's also one of the poorest of France and the people's dialect there has been the subject of many jokes. Now the French are laughing with the Ch'tis rather than at them. The movie tells the story of a post office worker in the sunny south of France who's caught cheating on his job application. As punishment he's transferred to the north. That's the French equivalent of being sent off to Siberia. At first things are as bad as he fears. The man can't understand the locals, but when he settles in he finds the people are warm and welcoming. The film is a love letter from this French comedian who wrote, directed and stars in the film. He grew up in the region and he says he wanted to promote a misunderstood area. The film has clearly struck a chord, and is now the most popular French film of all time, providing a boost for the northern region. Tourism has taken off in the northern region. This local of the north says he thinks the film is popular because it harkens back to an olden time. He doubts the film will travel well because he doubts the jokes are able to be effectively translated across cultures and languages.

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