Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Trip Report: Paris [Day 3] Cinema Museum and Moulin Rouge

The next day was quite an adventure. Eliza had a test that day, so we had planned to visit Versaille, as it was included in our Museum Pass and what would make it all worthwhile, as Versaille costs around 25 Euros to visit. So Eliza told us how to get there using the metro and RER, and we headed out bright and early.

Well, we ran into our first struggles at the La Defense station. We couldn't figure out how to buy a ticket to Versaille using the machines, so we finally just hopped on the metro to go to the station we would have to catch the RER at, anyway. So we find a ticket booth there and ask to buy tickets to Versaille, and - "Oh, it's closed today. The garden is open, though." It's snowing outside and the garden is free (so we wouldn't be helping 'pay' for our Museum Pass), so that was a no go. We opened up our Museum Pass books to see if there were any interesting museums that we could go to. A Cinema Museum in a building designed by Frank Gehry ("starchitect" who also designed the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles) - that sounded cool. So instead of using up another Metro pass, we decided to walk from there (Abby's idea) which was cool at first because we got to see the city, rather than underground tunnels.

Notre Dame

And then it was just too freakin cold, so we had to go into another cafe. We did get wonderful omelets for brunch and more overpriced cappuccinos. I suppose we're spoiled by 2.50 Euro Italian cappuccinos, but the 5-6 Euro ones in Paris were really getting old.



Paris

After walking for at least half an hour, we finally got there.

Paris Cinema Museum

I must say, it was less than hopping.

Paris Cinema Museum

Paris Cinema Museum

The museum itself was small. Hardly worth the walk, especially since we had been to the fabulous cinema museum at the Mole in Torino (it's a must-do). You couldn't take photos inside, so I can't show you anything. But because they were trying to focus solely on French film, they didn't have a lot to show. Just Charlie Chaplin, Metropolis, and other old black and white films. The top level (it was only two stories) was supposed to be contemporary films, but it was very dated.

So we came up short on our Museum Pass. And the only museum that I truly enjoyed was the Pompidou.

We headed back to La Defense and decided to do some shopping (errr... looking) at their mall.

Grand Arch Paris

As you can tell, it is a beautiful, cheery day outside -

La Defense, Paris

That night, we had tickets to see Moulin Rouge. Eliza wanted to see it, and we bought her ticket as a thank you for letting us stay with her.

We ate dinner at an authentic French restaurant before the show. It was really good, and I got to try hot wine.

Moulin Rouge

Our table was in the nosebleed section...

Moulin Rouge

It was entertaining, along the lines of a Vegas show. The opening number was a little shaky - if you want to see synchronized dancers with Rockette precision, this isn't the show. They have like 20 male dancers who are impossible to take seriously, since they can't dance together (they can dance solo just fine, but for some reason when they're in a group, it's almost as if they're trying to outshine eachother - "Ha! I beat you to that move!"). Possibly the most impressive parts of the show were the in-between acts entertainment. There was a very impressive male/female stunt duo, and the guy would have the girl in the air while balancing on the top of a chair and crazy things like that. It was also somewhat humorous because their music started out with "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen," and turned out to be a Trans Siberian Orchestra Christmas medley.

I'm glad I went. It was expensive, but it was one of the few things in Paris that I felt like was worth the money spent on it.

Moulin Rouge