L'Auberge Espagnole


L'Auberge Espagnole

Critics Consensus

This multicultural comedy captures the chaos and excitement of being young.



Reviews Counted: 92

liked it

Audience Score

User Ratings: 34,614


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Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.9/5

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Movie Info

A man eager to learn Spanish gets an education he wasn't expecting in this comedy drama. Xavier (Romain Duris) is a French economics student who is nearing the completion of his degree and is looking for work. Xavier's father arranges for him to meet a ranking member of the Ministry of Finance, who makes him an offer -- he can give him a good job, but only under the condition that he learn to speak Spanish. Determined not to pass up the opportunity, Xavier enrolls in a language program in Barcelona, despite the misgivings of his girlfriend, Martine (Audrey Tautou). Upon his arrival, Xavier moves into a large house shared by a large group of students from all over Europe. Xavier finds that his ideas and attitudes are challenged in a positive way by the diverse personalities of his housemates, and that his loyalty to Martine is tested by his attraction to Anne-Sophie (Judith Godrèche), a sweet but lonesome woman from France who has been away from her husband for too long. After a visit, most of Xavier's roommates decide they don't much care for Martine and Xavier gets advice on seducing Anne-Sophie from an unexpected source -- Isabelle (Cécile de France), a footloose lesbian living in the house. L'Auberge Espagnole received its world premier at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival, and went on to earn prizes at the 2002 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, the 2003 Lumière Awards, and the 2003 César Awards.

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Judith Godrèche
as Anne-Sophie
Federico D'Anna
as Alessandro
Kevin Bishop
as William
Wladimir Yordanoff
as Jean Charles Perrin
Iddo Goldberg
as Alistair
Martine Demaret
as Xavier's Mother
Paulina Gálvez
as Flamenco Teacher
as Xavier's Father
Sylvie Lachat
as University Secretary
Magali Roze
as Stewardess
Shilpa Baliga
as Nurse Miralpeix
Pere Sagrista
as Catalan Teacher
Pere Abello
as Innkeeper
Babou Cham
as Catalan Student 1
Dani Grao
as Catalan Student 2
Ivan Morales
as Catalan Student 3
Arsene Royer
as Lars's Son
Sophie Delin
as Hotel Neighbor
Pablo Klapisch
as Xavier's Child
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News & Interviews for L'Auberge Espagnole

Critic Reviews for L'Auberge Espagnole

All Critics (92) | Top Critics (34)

Audience Reviews for L'Auberge Espagnole

It's unfortunate that this film's marketing outside of Europe relied so much on Audrey Tautou, post-Amélie--be advised, she's barely in the movie. What you will find here, however, is light Linklater-ish fare: a deceptively simple story about a summer abroad and all the discovery and temptations and challenges that come with it. It works largely in types, but the characters are memorable and the style (both narrative and visual) aren't the same old cookie-cutter stuff. Quite enjoyable, in all.

Daniel Perry
Daniel Perry

Super Reviewer

A lovely, funny and touching film about friendship and love that will please even more those who know what it is like to live abroad, and it portrays with a charming sincerity the insecurities and fears of youth through a group of characters that we easily relate to and care about.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

French student's coming-of-age story. Reminded me of a European version of Haruki Murakami's "Norwegian Wood", but I found the events in this one a little more prosaic / less magical.

Letitia Lew
Letitia Lew

Super Reviewer

At first sight, this film is a lively and engaging comedy, particularly for anybody familiar with the world of Erasmus students. Klapisch has undoubtedly succeeded in capturing the atmosphere of the multi-national student squat, creating an immediately interesting cultural crossroads, and of course a premise for lots of stereotyped jokes. And what trendier place for it all to take place than Barcelona ? The film's sparky characterisation (particularly Wendy zi English and her 'geezer' of a brother) proves that Klapish has observed intently the lifestyle and behaviour of today's European student travelers. However, this does not hide a handful of gaping holes in the plot, which are easily noticeable on a second viewing of the film. L'auberge espagnole falls arms flailing into the voice-over trap: drastic over-use throughout. Whether Klapisch intended to give a bird's eye view of the action, or simply to speed up the pace of the film at times, the result of too much voice-over is that Xavier's character loses its authenticity. Romain Duris's acting is wooden - particularly with so many beautiful females around. As for Judith Godreche, she plays a non-starter of a part. Her character has no proper relationship with either of her men. Klapish has paid attention to some nice little details. A quick shot of a sandal's foot on a marble staircase, William the English lad's upturned collar, and a TV clip of the Catalan sport of human tower-building, for example. However these little gems cannot hide flagrant over-editing which stagger the flow of the film and dissolve any feeling of resolution at the end. The frantic city running scene à la 007 is ridiculous: why ALL the house mates have to return so suddenly remains a mystery. Some say this film makes political reference to the leading European powers. I think that it just wants to be a light entertaining comedy: it nearly fails even to be that !

Cassandra Maples
Cassandra Maples

Super Reviewer

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