What Populaire would look like if set in 2016

If you’re looking for a film to inspire you to type faster, you don’t need to go much further than Populaire (2012), a witty French romance about Rose, a God-awful secretary who discovers she has the need, the need for (typing) speed.

Populaire the typing film

It’s essentially a Technicolor love story between boy, girl and typewriter. Set in the 1950s, the film is a stylish homage to the offices of old, filled with cigarette smoke and the sound of clacking keys.  It follows Rose from her humble beginnings in a small French village, typing out her name on an old typewriter from her father’s shop window, to the heady heights of the world speed typing championships.

If you’re into typing or indeed a transcriber, it’s a pretty inspiring watch. Let’s face it, the film world doesn’t offer much in the way of typing heroes (although a lycra-clad, masked mystery man who types so fast he shoots fire out of his fingers, only to be thwarted by the terribly evil Dr Typo and Lady Finger Cramp would surely be a huge hit).

Typing goes to Hollywood Texas

A quick search for ‘film characters who are typists’ brings up… Well, Populaire and not much else. So until the film world does transcribers everywhere justice, we’ll just have to keep watching Rose and her typewriter, and dreaming of winning the typing championship ourselves.

The good news is that speed typing competitions are still very much happening, like this one (below) at SXSW a few years back. It’s not quite the glamour-fest depicted in the film however, and is more beard than bouffant these days, with the male species taking up the reigns and getting in on the action.

And if Populaire was made today?

If Populaire was made today, it would be a very different beast. Why limit typing fun to the ladies for a start? Today the protagonist could just as easily be male as female. And long gone would be the pretty frocks, the sharp suits, the eternal cigarette in hand. Our heroic transcriber may well type away in his pyjamas, or perhaps in an ironic band t-shirt, still in bed, laptop on knee in his university halls, his headphones blocking out the sounds of Jeremy Kyle coming from the living room.

Perhaps he gets a job in an office where he’s spotted, not for his good looks or sparkling personality, but for that 100 words per minute typing speed he’s hitting, his determination, that unyielding focus on the screen. He doesn’t even use spell check for Pete’s sake! His manager might just see an opportunity, a chance for an all-expenses paid trip to SXSW and maybe he’ll even get to see that totally hype electronic band he likes while he’s there. Office romance? More like bromance! Think Seth Rogan pushing young typist-extraordinaire Zac Efron to his limits as he sits hunched over an iPad, showing him how to use find and replace to save valuable seconds, massaging his cramping fingers.

Typing in the modern age

Populaire brought typing to the big screen with bucket-loads of style and charm, but it highlights just how much has changed since then, much of it for the better. So if you haven’t given your notion of transcription a 21st Century reboot, you might be in for a surprise as to what is out there.

Even since we began in 2005, the world of transcription has come a long way. And it’s evolving all the time. From market research analysis to HR recordings, to video marketing and film editing, we know how useful our transcription services are in helping individuals be more efficient with their time. If you think you could do with some transcription support, but not sure where to start, why not give our team a call?

Words by Transcriber Ruth

To find out how we could help save you time, contact us at: bookings@takenotetyping.com