By Nathalie Charles, Program manager, CinéSchool
When it comes to finding French films or TV shows for kids to watch, the number of programs available on streaming platforms in the US can be overwhelming. That’s why, each month, CinéSchool program manager and all-around film expert Nathalie Charles puts together a list of the top French content for kids and teens that is available online. While some films or series are pure entertainment, others are designed to share useful educational concepts, and more still are great for the whole family to enjoy! So, what’s on this month?
La Fête de la Francophonie
To celebrate La Francophonie, IFcinéma à la carte is offering a selection of French shorts films, En Sortant de l’école – Robert Desnos,” available online and for free from March 1-31, 2022:
Bonsoir tout le monde by Kathleen Ponsard; Couchée by Debora Cheyenne Curchon; Couplet de la rue de Bagnolet by Quentin Guichoux; Dans un petit bateau by Charlotte Cambon; Demi-rêve by Gabrielle Sibieude; Il était une feuille by Anaïs Scheeck; J’ai tant rêvé de toi by Emma Vakarelova; La Grenouille aux souliers percés by Juliette Cuisinier; Le Salsifis du Bengale by Raphaëlle Stolz; Le Zèbre by Viviane Boyer-Araujo; Les Quatre sans cou by Alix Fizet; Papier buvard by Marine Laclotte; and Paris by Justine Vuyksteker.
The New York International Children’s Film Festival (March 4 – April 3, 2022)
Since 1997, New York International Children’s Film Festival has become the largest and most prestigious festival for children’s film in North America. While the 2022 Festival will take place in New York City, all programming for younger audiences will be available online and nationwide from March 4 through April 3.
– French short film Step by Step presented in the SHORTS FOR TOTS program (recommended ages 3+)
– French short films Mido and the Instrumals, A Lynx in the Town, Athleticus: Sled, and Athleticus: Guides presented in the BONUS: SHORTS FOR TOTS 2021 program (recommended ages 3+)
Belle and Sebastian (Belle et Sébastien)
Directed by Nicolas Vanier, 2013, 1h44, France / recommended for ages 10+
Based on the beloved children’s book, this exciting tale set in the picturesque French Alps follows the friendship of a 6-year-old boy and a stray dog who prove to be heroes when they help defend their occupied village against the Nazis.
If you like this film, you may like the entire series:
Belle and Sebastian: The Adventure Continues (Belle et Sébastien, l’aventure continue)
Directed by Christian Duguay, 2015, 1h37, PG / recommended for ages 9+
Available on Hoopla | Vudu | AmazonVideo | GooglePlay | iTunes | Microsoft
Mush-Mush and the Mushables – Season 1 (Mush-Mush & les Champotes)
Created by Elfriede de Rooster and directed by Joeri Christiaen, 2020
Animated Preschool TV Series, France-Belgium-UK / recommended for ages 4+
Mush-Mush & the Mushables follows the comedy adventures of the Mushable community as, together, they put the fun back into fungi! As pocket-sized Guardians of the Forest, each Mushable has a special gift. While Mush-Mush can communicate with nature, Lilit shines bright like a light and Chep has an impressive memory. As they get to know their talents and their limits, the Mushables find there is still a lot to discover about growing up…
White Fang (Croc-Blanc)
Directed by Alexandre Espigares, 2018, 1h27, France-Luxembourg / recommended for ages 10+
Based on the timeless novel by Jack London, White Fang is the story of a proud and courageous wolfdog, fighting for his survival among the Canadian wilderness, the cities suddenly became wealthy during the gold rush in the Klondike 1890s. Born in the forest of a sled dog mother who fled their masters, White Fang will overcome challenges imposed not by the hostility of nature itself, but by his encounter with the men who shaped these austere regions.
Available on Netflix (#tip: make sure to click on “Subtitles & Audio” and select audio in French!)