Friz On Film Movie Review: Driving Madeleine

“Driving Madeleine”

Directed by: Christian Carion

Starring: Line Renaud, Dany Boon

Official Synopsis: A seemingly simple taxi ride across Paris evolves into a profound meditation on the realities of the driver and his fare, a 92-year-old woman whose warmth belies her shocking past. Charles (Dany Boon) is a taxi driver in Paris, and he is having a very bad day. Enter Madeleine (Line Renaud), an immaculately groomed nonagenarian, who informs Charles that the trip today will not be a direct one. She is moving into a nursing home and would like to make some stops along the way predicting that this might be her last car ride through the city.


I had the pleasure of watching this film on a recent snowy day in Baltimore. The first thing that stuck out to me was the score. Very vibrant at times, and frightening at others.

The two leads are such a highlight of this film. Line Renaud who plays Madeleine is sensational. She exudes strength, longing, and warmth. She even provides a few laugh out loud moments. Dany Boon, who plays her down on his luck cab driver, is a revelation.

Loved the use of Etta James in the flashbacks of Madeleine’s life. “At Last” provided a few moments where I felt like I was actually in the film, with the characters. Kudos to the music supervisor!

There’s a quote in the movie that I’m still thinking about:

“Each moment of anger ages you.”

I may come off as a simple guy, but to me, this was profound.

I also felt like Paris was the third main character in the film. I loved seeing it today and in the past. It was almost like a historical love letter to the City of Light.

“Driving Madeline” is heartbreaking. Moving. It may *almost* be predictable. But the performances, the sadness, the joy, the well worth the journey.

5/5 stars

“Driving Madeleine” is Now Playing at Bethesda Row Cinema in Bethesda! Buy tix