Sometimes I hesitate with sentences that begin with generic plural nouns, because I don't know what article to use.

For example, the sentence "Movies are fun." Would that becomes Les films sont fun, Des films sont fun, or is it ever okay to just say Films sont fun ? I know I've never seen a sentence like the last one.

2 Answers 2


In the example you used :

Movies are fun >>> Les films, c'est chouette1.

Why? As a rule of thumb when refering to categories or sets :

The whole set (all movies) >>> les films
Multiple objects in the set (some movies) >>> des films

Of course, here it's not a logical statement where you would refer to a whole category and really assert that ALL these movies are equally fun. In casual speech it'll be a way to refer to movie-watching as a fun activity rather than saying anything about any or all movies being fun.

Using no articles at all does not occur outside of poetry and literature contexts, or maybe in very rare cases that don't cross my mind at the moment but it must be anecdotal, if any.

1  I changed the structure a bit to make it sound slightly more natural to french ears, but it changes nothing to the very point of your question nor to its answer, in my humble opinion. If you find it confusing, I'll change it back.

  • No, it makes sense. One thing though, it's not "ce sont chouette"? Jun 13, 2015 at 1:56
  • No, here c'est is impersonal, it's a difference in the ways french and english deal with the idea, it has been discussed here and is not an easy one to translate. Jun 13, 2015 at 2:00

Pas « fun », mais « les films sont amusants/plaisants/agréables/etc. » selon le sens que l'on souhaite.

Mais pour parler en général, on ne dira pas « les films », mais « le cinéma ».

Le cinéma, c'est super. Le cinéma, c'est....

On prend le nom générique, comme on dirait « l'art, c'est… », « la science, c'est… »

Si on dit « Les films sont », ça signifie que l'on parle de films définis, de films précis.

Dans le cinéma de la rue Victor Hugo, les films sont très bien.

  • Thanks for your edit Stéphane, but what is the formatting code?
    – Quidam
    Jun 23, 2015 at 13:51

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