12/20/2013 01:43 pm ET Updated Feb 19, 2014

A Pregnant Hostage, a Fake Homosexual, and a Man Who Cannot Walk

A few of the French movies I like best, available in the U.S. Not necessarily very recent, but not to be missed nevertheless. Trust me, I am French.

- The Well-Digger's Daughter (2011) with Daniel Auteuil. A laborer raises five daughters by himself, so some tension will arise, lots of laughs and some tears. A moral lesson, albeit old-fashioned.

- Les Intouchables (2011) with Omar Sy. Based on a true story, the improbable bond between a man who cannot walk and his valet who can only rebel. A comic but tender story with an incredible way to make you follow the lives of two men you would not necessarily care for. The most viewed French movie in the USA, ever.

- Point Blank (2010) with Gilles Lelouche. You won't have any nails left after watching this one. An uncommon hero, an unlikely suspense, a true thriller. A pregnant wife taken hostage? What will they think of next?

- The Valet (2006) with Gad Elmaleh, the dude who will marry Princess Charlotte of Monaco, I know you care. Hilarious comedy (isn't that an oxymoron?) tells the story of a simple valet park-er who gets mixed up with a beautiful girl who is mixed up with a politician, who is not a very nice guy. Ok, a classic.

- Joyeux Noël (2005) with Diane Kruger. Also based on a true story, the truce between soldiers of two enemy countries who decide to love each other for a day, set in 1914. Very moving. You will cry.

- A Very Long Engagement (2004) with Audrey Tautou. Set during WWI, the loveliest, longest and most enduring love story between a soldier and his soulmate. Epic in style and in sentiments. Crying material as well.

-District 13 (2004) with David Belle, the creator of Parkour, the impossible-made-possible extreme stunt sport that showed the world how to scale buildings, go through tiny holes, climb the face of any structure, and live to tell.

-Eight women (2002) with Catherine Deneuve and seven other incredible women. A who-dun-it comedic crime mystery farce. Oh, and they sing too. Those are tears of joy.

-Winged Migration (2001). Documentary on birds like you have never seen before. The way this was shot is science fiction at its best. Camera moves were invented for this film. Not a boring subject once you've seen the magic of cinematography at work in this masterpiece, shot over three years in seven continents.

-The Closet (2000) with Daniel Auteuil. Hilarious corporate life story mixed with homosexuality matter like you have never seen. Laugh until you cry.

- Indochine (1992) with Catherine Deneuve. A romantic epic set in what was called Indochina before it became Vietnam. A lush and heartbreaking saga of incredible beauty. Will teach you a bit about the country Americans have been trying to forget. You will cry, guarantee.

- Le Grand Bleu (1988) with Jean-Marc Barr. Luc Besson's masterpiece, in my opinion. Two divers compete for the world record, but actually teach us a philosophic crash course on humanity. Makes you want to pet a dolphin.

- The Story of Adèle H. (1975) with Isabelle Adjani. Adèle was the daughter of Victor Hugo, imagine the trauma of living with such a man. Obsessed with a British soldier, it lead her to madness. Based on true facts.