The Facts of Life Goes to Paris (1982)

facts of life goes to paris poster 1982 movie
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 7/10

Nice view of Paris, good to get characters in a different location

Typical Facts of Life story for the most part

Movie Info

Movie Name: The Facts of Life Goes to Paris

Studio: Embassy Television

Genre(s): Comedy

Release Date(s): September 25, 1982

MPAA Rating: Not Rated

It’s just like Ratatouille…with Mrs. Garrett

It’s summer break, and Paris is calling!  With Mrs. Garrett (Charlotte Rae) tries to take a cooking course from a difficult chef (Roger Til), Natalie (Mindy Cohn), Tootie (Kim Fields), Jo (Nancy McKeon), and Blair (Lisa Whelchel) make a break from their strict exchange school to explore the city.  Jo tries to reach Le Mans and encounters a young biker named David LeClair (Frédéric Andréi) while Blair seeks love in the city.  Tootie and Natalie try to inspire a broken down writer named Garth “G.K.” Kiley (Frank Bonner).

Directed by Asaad Kelada, The Facts of Life Goes to Paris is a TV movie comedy-romance.  The series falls between The Facts of Life—Season 3 and The Facts of Life—Season 4 and aired on NBC on September 25, 1982.

We watched The Facts of Life religiously.  We watched it new, we watched reruns, and we would watch the occasional movie when the “girls” went travelling (they later visited Australia).  The Facts of Life Goes to Paris was a lot like many of these ’80s sitcom trip movies…which isn’t a bad thing.

facts of life goes to paris kim fields mindy cohn frank bonner

I shall write a story about a radio station in Cincinnati

What is nice about movies like this is that it changes up the formula of the series.  It gets the characters away from their normal locations and allows them to have more time to develop in stories that aren’t permeated with a laugh-track.  Jo and Blair essentially “switch places” with Blair going it alone and Jo finding romance.  Natalie and Tootie (as normal) are a team, but it would feel wrong if they split up in the city.  It is a simple formula and typical, but it is a good change.

The movie doesn’t push the actors that far out of character, and they pretty much bring their acting from the show to Paris.  It isn’t always the best acting, but it is their characters.  The show mixes in Frédéric Andréi as Jo’s love interest and WKRP in Cincinnati vet Frank Bonner as the discouraged writer.  The movie does provide a nice bonding moment for Lisa Whelchel and Nancy McKeon’s characters.

facts of life goes to paris nancy mckeon frederic andrei

Jo finds romance!!!

The movie is a definite showcase for Paris, and that is what it is meant to be.  The characters hit up many of the famous sites of the city (and sometimes more than once leading me to believe that they just had one day at ____ location to shoot multiple characters).  The characters (besides Blair) are supposed to be exploring the city for the first time (and might have been) so it is a fun to see it through “new” eyes.  Unlike the regular series, the movie is shot on film which gives it a richer look.

The Facts of Life Goes to Paris follows in the footsteps of other TV series like The Brady Bunch heading to Hawaii, The Head of Class gang going to the Soviet Union, and Diff’rent Strokes visiting Hollywood while “going on vacation”.  It isn’t revolutionary or new, but it is always different and fun.  If you like The Facts of Life it is a natural progression to watch this film.

Related Links:

The Facts of Life—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

The Facts of Life—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

The Facts of Life—Season 3 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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