Hasn’t everyone fantasised about inheriting a vineyard in France from some forgotten, wealthy relative? I certainly have, though my ancestors are people like John and Mary Brown who were farmers in the Scottish borders. Ah well, Brexit would probably make it difficult anyway. At least I can visit all of the A Good Year locations in France and dream about an alternate reality.
Ridley Scott’s A Good Year (2006) stars Russell Crowe as Max, a financier living in London. When his uncle (Albert Finney) dies, he inherits the French vineyard where he spent summers as a child. But once Max arrives in Provence, a distant cousin throws his new real estate venture into question.
So, is A Good Year a good movie? Lol, no. It’s Russell Crowe starring in a Ridley Scott rom-com, for heaven’s sake. But you don’t watch films like A Good Year for entertainment, you watch them for escapism. A Good Year also shot some scenes in the financial district of London, England as well as France but who cares about them? You are here for the vineyards! The bistros! The winding country roads! So, let’s see exactly where all of the A Good Year film locations are in France.
Where Was A Good Year Filmed?
A Good Year Filming Locations in France
1. Château La Canorgue, Bonnieux
The first A Good Year location is unquestionably the best and most popular location in the film. The movie opens with Max as a young boy (played by Freddie Highmore) pretending to smoke one of his uncle’s cigars on the patio. In the movie, this is Château La Siroque but in real life, it is Château La Canorgue in Bonnieux which is a winery you can visit!
It’s just such a beautiful estate. It feels old but not rundown, grand but still cosy. Ancient trees surround the house to shelter it from the sun and lilypads still float in the ponds as they do in the film. A Good Year would not be worth watching if this château wasn’t so beautiful. Luckily, it is the film’s main setting.
2. Marseille Provence Airport, Marignane
In the present day, Max learns of his uncle’s death and his subsequent inheritance. He flies out to Marseille Provence Airport to find out the extent of his inheritance and to deal with the paperwork.
3. D218, Ménerbes, Vaucluse
Driving in his hired Smart car en route to the château, Max stops at the intersection of D218 and D3 in Ménerbes. He doesn’t know whether to turn left or right, so he calls his assistant to help.
4. Chapelle Des Pénitents Blancs, Gordes
On his way to see the notary who is in charge of Uncle Henry’s winery, Max drives erratically through a hillside village. He drives around a roundabout at least three times before driving back in the same direction. I think this is supposed to be humorous but it falls oh so flat.
This roundabout is in the gorgeous Gordes, next to Chapelle Des Pénitents Blancs which you can see clearly in the shot.
5. Le Renaissance Place, Gordes
The next A Good Year filming location in Provence is the bistro ran by Fanny Chenal (Marion Cotillard), the cyclist whom Max forced to swerve off the road. He spots her working at Le Renaissance Place in Gordes after visiting the French notary about a potential hiccup with his inheritance.
6. Place de l’Étang, Cucuron
Max asks Fanny out on a date and she temporarily takes leave of her senses and agrees. The A Good Year film location where they meet for dinner is Place de l’Étang, next to Bassin de l’Étang in Cucuron which is some kind of large manmade pool. It’s quite the romantic set up with fairy lights hung in the trees and a silent movie playing across the water.
7. Gare d’Avignon TGV, Avignon
When Christie (Henry’s illegitimate daughter, played by Abbie Cornish) decides to get away from the winery, she hops on a train at Gare d’Avignon train station. I’m not sure if Max also departs from this station to head back to London, he may have. And that’s the last new A Good Year movie location!
In my research, I saw that Francis Duflot’s farmhouse appeared somewhere in the movie, and the filming location is Château Les Eydins. But I don’t remember this scene! So I’m mentioning it here just in case I blacked out and missed it.
And those are all the top A Good Year locations in the South of France! Have you watched the movie or visited any of the A Good Year filming locations? Let me know in the comments below!
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